Two for the show: They aren't attached at the hip (we don't think so anyway), but OPRF head coach Matt Maloney (right) and former head coach and current assistant coach Al Allen seem to be doing the work of one during games. Are matching clothes soon to follow?J. GEIL/Staff Photographer

I just find it fascinating, not fascinating, but fascinating … you know, in the droll sense. I’m not sure it’s wrong, disruptive or unacceptable, just fascinating.

No matter how you slice it, OPRF appears to have two head basketball coaches this season.

I know Matt Maloney, now in his third year, is listed as the official head coach of the Huskies, but if you were at the home opener last week, then you know what I’m talking about. Al Allen, who spent 21 seasons as head coach before handing over the reins to Maloney, was sitting to Maloney’s right on the bench. Yep, not to his left like most assistant coaches do from youth on up to the NBA, but to his right — first chair on the OPRF bench.

On occasion, Allen hollered out orders to the defense, even stood up, blocking Maloney’s view. And he paced, perhaps out of habit. Not frequently, but he did pace! Have you ever seen an assistant coach pace the sidelines of a basketball game? Maybe in Bizarro World.

Maloney did the same thing. More than once on Thursday night both were standing and barking orders at the players simultaneously — a cacophony of noise, nothing I could decipher. I’m sure the players were able to home in on the specifics of each coach’s directives, but it looked confusing nonetheless.

The head coach is supposed to stand up during a game and holler out orders, plays, reminders or, if you will, helpful hints. I can only imagine that things can get a little fuzzy for the players when an assistant coach is doing the same thing at the same time. What Maloney and Allen are doing will either be looked back on as brilliant or ill-fated. It’s either going to be referred to as the two-headed monster or the two-headed super coach.

At the start of the final quarter during Thursday night’s game, while both Maloney and Allen were situated comfortably in their respective chairs, a technical foul was called on one of them. At the time, both were jabbering away at both the players and the referees. I wasn’t sure who was hit with the technical, Maloney or Allen. (Maloney later confessed it was on him).

Again, I’m not saying this is right or wrong, just unusual.

Maybe this wouldn’t be so bizarre if Allen just wore a seatbelt.

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Brad Spencer

Brad Spencer has been covering sports in and around Oak Park for more than a decade, which means the young athletes he once covered in high school are now out of college and at home living with their parents...

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