Tubby versus Penny: Is Memphis ready to replace Tubby with Penny?

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Tubby or Penny?

Everyone we ask gives us the same answer.

"I think Penny Hardaway would be a great choice for the Memphis Tigers," a Tiger fan said.

His resume is hard to beat.

Hardaway is a hometown hero who played for the University of Memphis and ascended to NBA greatness.

Not to mention he currently coaches East High School's basketball team, which is arguably the best in the country.

"Everyone is looking at Penny Hardaway," a Memphis resident said.

According to CBS Sports, The University of Memphis is thinking about firing current coach Tubby Smith and replacing him with Hardaway.

"I like them both, but I think Penny Hardaway would be the best out of the two,"

Under Smith, the Tigers are 38 and 25, but attendance is down.

It breaks my heart when they scan those bleachers and it's half empty.

Smith, who won a National Championship with Kentucky in the nineties, talked about the possibility of being fired Wednesday.

"I'm never surprised. I'm too old to be surprised. That's the way it works in this business, and I understand that," Smith, head coach of the University of Memphis basketball team, said.

Fans understand he's a hall of fame coach who hasn't done a terrible job.

"You know, I'm not going to say anything negative on it. He just hasn't gotten the win column up there," a Tiger fan said.

As founder of an elite youth basketball team and coach of a dominant high school team, Hardaway would be in a good position to recruit top talent to The University of Memphis.

As for attendance, fans say just his name is enough to fill the seats.

"If Hardaway gets the job. I believe we will see a dramatic increase in attendance the first year that he's here," a Tiger fan said.

It's worth noting, Tubby Smith is in his second year of a five year deal.

The University of Memphis would have to pay him $10 million for him to go away.


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