April 06, 2011
Frank Haith had no sooner been named the head coach at Missouri than he had to move on to the next task: Recruiting.
The Tigers have nine scholarships to fill over the next 13 months and Haith knows it is no easy task.
"That's a lot of work, man," Haith said. "We got to get it done. I don't look at it positive-negative. I just look at it as a lot of work.
"I'm not afraid of working. That's who I am."
As for what the new coach is looking for?
"We're going to be patient in terms of what we do in recruiting," he said. "Understand this, we're not going to take guys just to take guys."
Haith's work on the recruiting trail actually didn't even wait for his formal introduction. He had already made calls to coaches prior to his initial press conference.
"I talked to a couple coaches in St. Louis and I've got a couple coaches on my docket to call in Kansas City," Haith said. "I've recruited this state before."
Step one is getting to know Otto Porter, the senior at Scott County Central High School outside Sikeston. Porter had Missouri atop his list for a long time, but things have been in flux since Mike Anderson went to Arkansas. Porter has visits to Georgetown and Kansas scheduled, but has told us he will wait to get to know Haith before making a decision.
In addition, Haith has to figure out who will help him recruit those players. He does not yet have any assistants, but former Western Illinois coach Derek Thomas and former Duke player and St. Louis native Chris Carawell have been mentioned. Haith said he hopes to have a staff in place some time next week.