*Note: I originally published a version of this in 2016. It’s amazing that we had to sit through 4 more years of Mason’s “Process” and Rurinary Tract Infection nonsense. For this “Coaching Search” series, we don’t need his permission. We got an email from the league office. Jeff Green traveled! What was I saying again?
Listen, as comedian Mike Birbiglia likes to say: I’m in the future, also. In retrospect, Derek Mason, though an intriguing defensive coordinator at a similar school academically and athletically—and one that has had football success in the latter since the Jim Harbaugh era—was in over his
head het as a head coach. It happens. He’s a very nice guy, and on paper was an excellent hire to continue the success of the Old Bald Poach, but... well... what Mike Birbiglia said.
After this week’s horrid showing against a Big XII team, the pitchforks got sharpened, the torches were lit, and DoreOnThePlains’ Sunshine Pump got so gunked up, he had to scrap it for parts.
By the time I posted my Mail Bag for the week this Sunday, Derek Mason had already been fired... us fans just didn’t know it yet.
His tenure started with an enthusiasm killing trouncing at the hands of a Temple team coached by the very candidate I will argue for in this article. It ended somehow even worse than that.
Or, as I said to former site czar Train Island on the Twatters...
Counterpoint... it started with our hets drenched vs. Temple and ended with a team that had completely given up on him. I will not miss him for a second.— Andrew VU '04 (@AndrewVU041) November 29, 2020
With Mason finally being shown the door, it is now time to start our official search for the next head coach of our beloved football Commodores. May he (or she) be our next BoJo or OBP, and avoid the ignominy of inseminating turkeys in a Florida toll booth.
For our next coach, ironically, we here at Anchor of Gold will stump for the two coaches who completely outclassed Derek Mason in his first year. One whose Charleston Southern team narrowly lost to us 21-20 (and made teenaged girl commenter Parlagi squee continually), and the other—the preferred candidate, I will argue—whupped the ever-loving tar out of us 37-7 to fully introduce us to the horrors that would be our seven year Derek “Derp” Mason experiment.
Nadia Harvin: Administrative Specialist,
Head Het Football Coach - Temple University
Though Head Football Coaches who adopt dual roles, such as Derek Mason did from time to time when he took over the defensive play calling, can often prove to have bitten off more than they can chew, Administrative Specialist, Head Football Coach Nadia Harvin has weathered the storm of multiple Athletic Directors, and has been with Temple University for 34 years. One thing Vanderbilt football has lacked of late is consistency—both on the football field and in communication (of message to the press, of uniforms, of not having epic marketing fails regarding social media and uniforms)—and this is something Coach Harvin has no problem with.
As an Administrative Specialist, Coach Harvin has, for the past 34 years at Temple, put together recruiting materials, organized mail outs, dealt with boosters and agents who want access to her players, dealt with the media in all facets, and did this all while assuming the plethora of responsibilities of a head football coach at a Division I college in a major metropolitan city that is known for being tough on their coaches. Further, she has done this with a smile.
While some would point to Coach Harvin’s #WetHet campaign as evidence of a failure to effectively deal with social media, do I need to remind you just how wet our hets became when Coach Harvin’s team came to town for Derek Mason’s first game in his tenure as Head Coach of Vanderbilt University? Clearly, Coach Harvin heard tell of Mason’s “Deep Water” marketing campaign, and replied in tongue-in-cheek kind. You want to drag us to deep water? Well we’ll wet your hets! Checkmate Harvin.
Further, the positive publicity Vanderbilt would gain from breaking the gender barrier in a conference as rabid about football as the SEC is unprecedented, and could only help when selling the Vanderbilt football program and a Vanderbilt education to the most important person in the recruiting process—the moms.
Beyond the moms, you all saw how the entire college feetball media world swarmed to cover us when Mason decided—well, Covid and Thanksgiving break decided for him, really—to make Vanderbilt Soccer goalkeeper Sarah Fuller his kicker for this week’s game against Missourah (spits). And all she got to do was a squib kick. Imagine the positive publicity we will garner when we double down on that and make history with Harvin.
Need I also mention that Derek Mason does not serve as his own Administrative Assistant, and, as such, was effectively costing the university that additional salary? Thought not.
Finally, I implore you to read her current job bio on Temple’s athletics website:
Nadia Harvin is in her 34th year at Temple, including 25 1/2 years in Football, and 16 years as the Administrative Specialist for the Head Football Coach. She has worked with nine head coaches, beginning with Bruce Arians.
She started her career at Temple as a temp for Associate Athletic Director Earl Cleghorn before becoming a full-time employee in Paley Library catalog services. She has worked for Tuttleman Counseling Services, Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, and the Office of Business Services.
Harvin earned her bachelor’s degree in organizational studies from Temple in 2006. She was a member of the Temple women’s bowling team during the 1981-82 season.
Harvin and her husband, Allen, have a son, Ramish Jordan, and two grandchildren, Elona and Andrew.
She literally named one of her two grandchildren after all of our commenters. Do I really need to keep stumping for her, fellow Andrews???
Chances She Accepts the Job: Slim to none. Though Temple has experienced an uptick in their football program of late (as Harvin has led them to 5 straight bowl appearances), it wasn’t always this way. For many of her 34 years with the team, Temple Football was an afterthought, or a joke. If she stuck with them during the hard times, why would she leave during the good times? To pry her loose, we’d have to back up more than a few Brinks trucks in her driveway. Something to consider.