ODU's firing of Taylor awkward, sad

Selig did not address his search process Tuesday, but his two-plus years at ODU have been marked by bold strokes.

He upgraded the football program to the Bowl Subdivision, a decision that required moving the entire athletic operation from the Colonial Athletic Association to Conference USA. He parted ways with iconic women's basketball coach Wendy Larry.

In all, Selig has hired new coaches for ODU baseball, women's lacrosse, field hockey, women's basketball, women's golf, women's crew, and men's and women's tennis. That's eight of the Monarchs' 18 sports.

This will be his most important hire to date, and despite the season's failings, ODU is a quality job, with the resources, facilities and recruiting base to attract countless candidates.

It's a job that Taylor made much more attractive, through not only coaching but also sheer force of personality.

When he arrived at ODU, Taylor willingly discussed his past missteps.

"When you're younger, you're cruising along," he told the Daily Press' Dave Fairbank. "You have a lot of energy, you're on the go. As you're pile-driving along, and when something like that happens to you, it causes you to step back and say: 'What am I doing here? How is this affecting me? How is it affecting my wife, my family, my job?'"

Taylor said then that sobriety had made him "a happier person.. I think I'm more focused on my family and my job. … I just decided it was best for me to have one of them."

He nodded toward a Diet Coke.

May Taylor find similar happiness and focus again.

David Teel can be reached at 757-247-4636 or by email at dteel@dailypress.com. For more from Teel, read his blog at dailypress.com/ teeltime and follow him at twitter.com/DavidTeelatDP

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