You can't fool me. Frank Layden isn't retiring from his head coaching duties with the Utah Jazz to become a front office fixture. No, sir. The man is just changing careers - from basketball coach to television color commentator.
No one will go on the record at this point, but sources at both CBS and TBS indicated late Friday that there was more than casual interest in the news that Layden is handing over the clipboard to new Jazz coach Jerry Sloan."Are you kidding?" said a CBS Sports official who asked not to be identified. "Look at what (former NFL coach John) Madden has done for our pro football coverage. Frank's the same kind of guy. I guarantee you he'll get a shot (at working televised NBA games)."
The Madden analogy wasn't lost on the folks at cable superstation TBS, which covers dozens of NBA games every season. "Layden could be the John Madden of pro basketball," said a TBS source who also requested anonymity. "The only problem I see is that maybe he's too funny and has too much to say. But if he can hold back and do the layman-oriented nuts-and-bolts analysis that Madden does, he could be a superstar."
Which should be an interesting experience for someone who's mostly had to put up with superstars during the past 20 or 30 years.