FOXBORO, MA - MAY 05: Fans cheer as the New England Revolution take the field before the game against Chivas USA on May 5, 2010 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Brian Bilello's announced seven-day window from the time of his conference call until the naming of a new head coach is winding to a close, and so far we've learned a few things about the Revolution's quest:
- There were around a dozen candidates identified and interviewed
- Jimmy Conrad announced, to no one in particular, that he was not interested in the job because he hated football lines and had too much respect for Steve Nicol
- Paul Mariner, Steve Ralston, Jay Heaps, and Brian Bliss are definitely among the candidates
- Paul Mariner ruled himself out immediately after interviewing, accepting a 2-year extension with Toronto
- The candidates were gleaned from a diverse array of backgrounds, with MLS and non-MLS experience throughout
It's probably a little late, but I'd like to take this opportunity to put forward my number-one, most prized candidate for the job. This man inspires all with just a word, possesses a keen mind and a colorful vocabulary, had a storied professional soccer career overseas and in the United States, and his previous MLS coaching record is a respectable 46-44-20. In fact, in his first MLS coaching assignment, he led his team to a Supporters' Shield.
That's right. My dream candidate for the New England Revolution head coaching job is the man, the myth, the legend, Mr. Ray Hudson.
Hudson's been out of the coaching game since 2004 after two disappointing seasons in the nation's capitol. Since then, Hudson has been half of one of the greatest tandems in soccer broadcasting, running GolTV matches with Phil Schoen. His inimitable, enthusiastic style and notoriously diverse lexicon entertain thousands, and while some would decry him as nothing but an overblown distraction from the action, I am completely taken with his style.
I get goosebumps just thinking about what those press conferences would be like. Stevie was good for some entertaining quotes and swell times, but that pales in comparison to what Ray could bring to the table. He's also proven his coaching acumen, if in a different era of this league.
Taking this even slightly seriously, Ray would at least bring a massive buzz about the team and make the Revs almost seem relevant again. He's a choice that's so far off the beaten path that I could actually get behind it.
It will never actually happen, though. The organization's own likely misgivings notwithstanding, Ray would never take the job. I actually asked Phil Schoen about it, and got this response:
Oh well. A man can dream, right?