One way or the other, Coach K is finally going to be out of a job next Monday night... Either he is going to be retired on the court Saturday at the hands of his mortal rival - North Carolina - or he is going to be in the National Championship game.
But one way or the other - in just 72 hours of time - Coach K is going to need something else to do. Anytime someone spends 42 years accomplishing everything that Coach K has, it's appropriate to take a full season to pause and appreciate all the individual (not team) accolades while also worshiping the ground he walks on and the air he breathes.
But SOMEONE has to think of Coach K - the man - after all this is over. Someone has to think of who he is going to be once he steps away from the court - never, ever to return again. (His words - not mine.)
Coach K has openly admitted he has no hobbies other than basketball.
This is concerning with Tuesday morning looming...
Men are funny when they run out of purpose in life. They grow old, bored and crotchety.
As usual, Coach K is immaculately prepared, so he already has a leg up in these areas.
Out of the kindness of my heart, I took some time to come up with things Coach K could do to help ease him into his newfound retirement.
So without further ado - I present to you 42 suggestions for Coach K in his retirement. One for each year his little hobgoblin face graced us with his presence.
1. Fly Model Airplanes -
Coach K will remain in his 6th floor office in the tower Duke built to hide his fac... I mean elevate him as a respected elder of their tribe. He is going to need something to do in there, so why not build & fly model airplanes?
2. Tennis -
This is an easy one. It has a ball and a net and John McEnroe proved you can scream & throw tantrums.
3. Get his Pilot's License -
If there's one thing we learned from Wright Thompson's latest piece on Coach K, it's that he REALLY loves flying private. If he was able to get his OWN pilot's license, then he could fly private while maintaining control. Win-win!
4. Puppetry – Let's be honest - Coach K already has a lot of experience working with puppets - especially on his coaching staff.
5. Invest in a New Wardrobe –
Tear-Away warm up pants aren’t going to cut it at the Washington Duke Inn & Country Club. Julians down the road has nice threads!
6. Become an Official –
Coach K has already proven he can see the game better than pretty much all officials anyways.
7. Guest Star on Sesame Street – The Duke students would appreciate his cameo.
8. Franchise an REI –
He could make bank selling Duke students all their Scheyer-ville camping needs.
9. Become a Gourmet Cheese Expert – Just common sense here. Rats love cheese.
10. Be the face of Ageless Male -
Is there honestly a better man for the job?
11. Be a model for Just for Men -
If he ever does go naturally grey, he would do well to sign a deal with Just for Men for some pocket change.
12. Take his Wife on a Well-Deserved Vacation - May I suggest Disney World? His wife's name is Mickie after all...
13. Open a Sausage Factory in Chicago – Coach is proudly from Chicago and has 42 years experience working in a sausage factory.
14. Buy & Sell Vintage Clothes – You KNOW the Sesame Street crowd would salivate over his game-used apparel.
15. Become A Lawyer – Duke has a great law school - hell, they'd probably give him an honorary degree! Plus he already has the lying thing down - see the Dillon Brooks / Oregon incident as Exhibit A.
16. Foster a Pet –
Again - just building on his proven experience fostering strays John Scheyer & Grayson Allen.
17. Part-Time Accountant – Coach could volunteer his time in the old folks home. He was always good at keeping score of all the slights, rights and wrongs
18. Get into Baking - If there's one thing Coach K can't live without, it's a massive chip on his shoulder. Now he could make his own!
19. Yoga – All that mindfulness and breathing might teach him how not to pass out in stressful moments like he did against Wake in '06.
20. Join a Book Club – Seems like a good way (the only way?) to get people to read his two books.
21. Trace his Genealogy – This might be a bad idea. He has a seeming hatred of Family and weirdly just prefers his "brothers."
22. Become Politically Active - If there's one thing we know Coach K LOVED to do, it was to try and influence the people in power.
23. Develop a Green Thumb – Another thing Coach loves to do - planting seeds and watching them grow into their potential!
24. Partner with Special K – Another branding opportunity AND a chance to help kids with a heart healthy breakfast! Coach K is all about the "kids" and we ALL know he thinks he's very special. Why else have a 10 month farewell tour?
25. Replace look-alike Pam from the Office in the Navage Commercials -
Another genius marketing opportunity for Coach K. First off - Pam looks tired of hawking this. Secondly - is there a better, more nasally-sounding voice to sell a nasal care product?
26. Start a Podcast – We would gladly teach Coach K the ropes of elite podcasting. Or... perhaps the teacher could become the student and Coach K could learn from JJ Redick?
27. Partner with the Keebler Elves – If there's one thing Coach K taught his players - it's that life after basketball is about your BRAND. This one seems like a natural fit - ya HEAR?
28. Try Voiceover Work -
I suggest the character of Little Gru from the Despicable Me franchise as a starting point.
29. Go to Therapy – I know he learned his ways from father figure Bob Knight, but there's no reason to repeat the sins of your youth. Work those issues out Coach! It will be better for your health long-term...
30. Run with the Bulls in Pamplona – Coach has been teaching how to take a charge for years!
31. Become a Public Speaker on Empathy – Coach K cares deeply about empathy. You can tell from the way he utilizes empathy in speaking to this Duke student about his major.
Duke: Coach K snarks at student reporter before asking for ’empathy’ (usatoday.com) 32. Children’s Basketball Camp Counselor– Technically he already has a children's camp. Apparently the kids are actually and really taught to slap the floor on defense!
33. Run for HOA President – After all, he is a born “leader who happens to coach basketball.” In his own words.
34. Board Games – Totally seems like the type that wouldn’t flip the board if he was losing.
35. Start a Vinyl Collection - Music can relax even the most agitated soul. May I suggest a few to start Coach off? - Tom Petty's "Even the Losers" - "Round & Round" by RATT - Cascada’s "Everytime We Touch" - for when he wants to remember the "magic" of Cameron
36. Playing a Musical Instrument – Speaking of music, I could see Coach K as an accordion guy. (It's full of hot air and when it gets squeezed, it makes a bunch of awful whiny sounds.) Maybe he could join a polka band? He is Polish after all.
37. Chess – I feel like old people are always out in the park playing chess under the trees on TV. At 75, he should probably learn this game soon.
38. Water Aerobics – I am unsure if Coach K knows how to swim, but there are always arm floaties and pool noodles. Plus it’s a great, low-impact way for him to keep in shape.
39. Metal Detecting – Since there won't be any more gold medals coming – if he wants to find any more precious metals – perhaps this is the way? Roy Williams is known to frequent Wrightsville Beach - maybe Coach K could use a hand?
40. Work for AT&T -
This is the most obvious one on the list. Guy apparently can't stop working! He's already lobbying for and demanding a new job (with his entitled attitude) in the commercials!
41. LARPing - Also known as Live Action Role Playing. Coach K is very good at pretending - like that time he pretended Gerald Henderson DIDN'T hit Tyler Hansbrough
Google says there's just fake blood in LARPing so Coach K will be safe. Plus I could totally see him dressing up as a Black Knight - he went to Army and likes to use his sword in pregame ceremonies so this is another natural fit. 42. Cooking - Coach K has benefited from more home cooking than any other coach I have ever seen. Let's hope he doesn't on Saturday night. And one more... For the road.