Minnesota State is still in the process of finding their next head coach after reassigning Troy Jutting earlier this month.
Yesterday, they brought in Nebraska-Omaha assistant coach Mike Hastings for an interview with the media and the public.
A lot of the college hockey world was left scratching their heads at the public interview, though it's not without precedent. Alaska conducted similar interviews with the public when filling their head coaching vacancy in 2007, which yielded Doc DelCastillo(*shudder*), and in 2008, when they hired Dallas Ferguson(Hooray!). Frankly, it's probably not a terrible idea, given the importance of how a coach is perceived in such a small community, to let the general public feel at least somewhat involved in the process.
That said, MSU seemed to handle it in a pretty strange way. The email announcing Hastings' public interview hit my inbox at exactly 11:12am on Friday afternoon, which means everybody got just under five hours of notice for the interviews. Even stranger was MSU's refusal to say if there were any other candidates that would be going through this process, or how many other candidates there were.
Not announcing any other candidates seemed to leave people more confused about what went on yesterday than anything. Had Hastings already been given the job? Is the job his if he wants it? Is he the favorite because there's other candidates? It's tough to say. I would suspect that in the haste to get the coaching situation settled as soon as possible, MSU began this public interview process without having the full list of who would be interviewing completely nailed down. Hopefully some of those questions are answered next week.