Grading the 2011 College Basketball Coaching Hires
Here’s a look at the 2011 Coaching Changes thus far, a quick review and grade for each hire. Note that grades are more associated with the quality of the hire, not the individual coach.
More details for each school are below. As the remaining jobs are filled, this article will be updated. But for the overall grades, here we go:
A: Arkansas, Fairfield, FGCU, George Washington, Providence, Texas Tech, UNLV
B+: Missouri St., Navy, Northern Illinois, Towson
B: Bradley, UC Davis, EMU, Fresno St., George Mason, IUPUI, Kent St., Lamar, Manhattan, Maryland, Miami, Monmouth, Murray St., Oklahoma, Princeton, Stetson, Texas A&M, Texas A&M – CC
C+: Eastern Washington, Tennessee, Georgia St, Colgate, Vermont
C: Georgia Tech, LA Tech, Wyoming
C-: Boston University, Utah, CSU Bakersfield, Missouri, NC State
Incomplete: Alabama A&M, Alcorn St., Florida A&M, Pepperdine, Tennessee Tech, Southern, Valparaiso
New Coach: Willie Hayes (Alabama A&M assistant)
Potential Alabama A&M Basketball coach Candidates:
Cy Alexander (former Tennessee St. coach), Ricardo Patton (former NIU coach), Willie Hayes (Alabama A&M assistant), Michael Grant (Stillman College coach), Eugene Harris (former FAMU coach)
Promoting an assistant at a lowest level program. Plenty of question marks.
Potential Alcorn St. Basketball Coach Candidates:
David Ponton (former Grambling women’s coach), Richard Horton (Humphrey’s County Day AD), Luther Riley (J.W.Provine High coach)
Tough to give a grade to a hire at this level. Riley is a virtual unknown compared to other schools hires this year. But in the SWAC, the level of play is much lower, so it’s seldom a launching pad for coaches to move on to other higher conference jobs.
Mike Anderson (Missouri coach)
Arkansas Basketball Coach Candidates:
Sources: School Interested in: Buzz Williams (Marquette coach), Tubby Smith (Minnesota coach), Frank Martin (Kansas St. coach), Gregg Marshall (Wichita St. coach), Mick Cronin (Cincinnati coach), Larry Brown (former NBA coach)
Can’t find any flaws here. Former coach Pelphrey had a great recruiting class and Anderson will likely get many to remain. Anderson has done a great job at UAB and Missouri in recent years. Having him back at Arkansas could be a real homerun.
Pat Chambers (resigned)
New Coach: Joe Jones (BC assistant)
Potential BU Basketball coach Candidates:
BU made a great hire last time with Chambers, an up and comer. So what did they do to replace him? They went with a BC assistant. And we’re not talking about a top tier BC program…we’re talking a rebuilding BC program. Jones came to BC as an assistant after a less than stellar run as head coach at Columbia. Its’ not to say that Jones wouldn’t one day be a head coach again. But a single year at BC after the failures at Columbia would usually be what it takes to get a MEAC or ASun level job. BU though has been one of the best in the America East and could have done better…even this late in the season.
Geno Ford (Kent St. coach)
Bradley Basketball Coach Candidates:
Confirmed Candidates: Dana Fife (IPFW coach), Greg Gard (Wisconsin assistant), Barry Hinson (Kansas assistant), Mark Montgomery (Michigan St. assistant), Paul Lusk (Purdue assistant)
Sources: Scott Sutton (Oral Roberts coach), Dan Monson (LBSU coach), Ray Giacoletti (Gonzaga assistant), Tim Buckley (Indiana assistant), Craig Neal (New Mexico assistant), Matthew Graves (Butler assistant), Rodney Terry (Texas assistant), Jerrance Howard (Illinois assistant)
Others: Keno Davis (former Providence coach), Todd Lickliter (former Iowa coach)
No Longer a Candidate: Rob Jeter (UW-Milwaukee coach)
Geno Ford is a good coach and part of the Kent St. pipeline that started with Gary Waters and Stan Heath. The move can be seen as somewhat lateral though. But a change of scenery for Ford could be Bradley’s gain.
Matt Langel (Temple assistant)
Potential Colgate Basketball coach Candidates:
Nathan Davis (Randolf-Macon coach), Pat Duquette (Northeastern assistant), Dane Fischer (Bucknell assistant), Mike Maker (Williams coach)
No longer a candidate: Glen Miller (UConn assistant)
Not a ton of interest in the Colgate job from the upper levels. The school flirted with Glen Miller, the former Brown coach currently an assistant at UConn. In the end, Colgate got the caliber of coach they expected. No real surprises.
California – Davis:
New Coach: Jim Les (former Bradly coach)
UC Davis Basketball coach Candidates:
Confirmed: Danny Yoshikawa (USF assistant), Jim Les (former Bradley coach), Jay John (Cal assistant), Greg Graham (former Boise St. coach), Donny Daniels (Gonzaga assistant)
Other potential candidates: Cameron Dollar (Seattle coach), Rob Ehsan (Maryland assistant), Brad Holland (former San Diego coach), Greg Gottlieb (Cal assistant), Greg Kamanski (Cal Poly Pomona coach), Ken Amman (Concordia coach), Dedrique Taylor (ASU assistant), Kevin Bromley (UCSB assistant), Scott Garson (UCLA assistant), Mark Fisher (SDSU assistant)
No longer candidates: Bob Cantu (USC assistant)
UC Davis wasn’t going to attract a homerun coach. They had two options: an up and comer assistant, or a retread. They opted for an established coach, albeit one who has been coaching outside the region. Les could use this as a chance to move back up the wrungs and I dont’ think UC Davis would be upset if it means some Big West titles.
Rod Barnes (former GA State coach)
Potential CSU Bakersfield Basketball coach Candidates:
Justin Hutson (SDSU assistant), Rod Barnes (former GA St coach), Vance Walberg (former Pepperdine coach, CSUB alum), Jim Harrick (former UCLA coach), Will Voight (Baskersfield Jam coach)
Barnes has been a good coach, evident of his Coach of the Year award at Mississippi. But that was a long time ago. Over the past decade, he’s had a losing record at Mississippi and Georgia St, being fired from Georgia St. this year. CSU Bakersfield’s hiring of Barnes is like a move you’d see at a new Mini-Mall in Ronkonkoma bringing in Jerry Cooney for an opening. There were a number of other candidates in the mix for the CSUB job that have local ties being from the region, alumni in the coaching ranks such as Justin Hutson and Vance Walberg, or hungry assistants looking to build a program. But instead of following the path of say fellow D1 independent, Seattle, who hired a hungry assistant in Cameron Dollar, CSUB went with the ultimate retread candidate.
Archie Miller (Arizona assistant)
Potential Dayton Basketball coach Candidates:
Archie Miller (Arizona assistant), Matthew Graves (Butler assistant), Billy Schmidt (Dayton assistant), John Groce (Ohio coach), Gary Waters (Cleveland St. coach), Rob Jeter (Wisconsin-Milwaukee coach), Keith Dambrot (Akron coach), Biily Kennedy (Murry St. coach), Chris Collins (Duke assistant), Greg Kampe (Oakland coach), Jim Christian (TCU coach), Porter Moser (St. Louis assistant)
Longshots: Donnie Tyndall (Morehead St. coach), Gregg Marshall (wichita St. coach), Tommy Amaker (Harvard coach), Blaine Taylor (ODU coach)
No longer a candidate: Steve Wojciechowski (Duke assistant)
Archie Miller is one of the best assistant coaches in the country. He’s been a part of the success at Ohio St. under Thad Matta and knows the state well. He’s been coaching the past 2 years with his brother Sean Miller at Arizona. Yes, the same Sean Miller who coached at Xavier and helped build that program to where it is. When a strong program takes a chance on an assistant coach, giving him his first head coaching job, you can only hope to have the background and connections of a guy like Archie Miller.
Rob Murphy (Syracuse assistant)
Potential Eastern Michigan Basketball coach Candidates:
Ric Wesley (Grand Valley St. coach), Cornell Mann (Dayton assistant), Dwayne Stephens (Michigan St. assistant), Tony Jones (former Tennessee assistant), Todd Lickliter (former Providence coach), Bacari Alexander (Michigan assistant)
Longshot: Gary Waters (Cleveland St. coach/former EMU assistant)
Murphy is an assistant who has started to pick up some buzz. EMU, like most MAC schools, can be a great stepping stone. EMU just needs to hope this first time head coach can build a program like Kent St. which has promoted the past 3 top assistants to take over when the head coaches got better offers elsewhere.
Jim Hayford (Whitworth University coach )
EWU Basketball Coach Candidates:
Sources: Ray Giacoletti (Gonzaga assistant), Carl Howell (Tacoma Community College coach), Jim Hayford (Whitworth University coach ), Jeff Hironaka (Washington State assistant), Ryan Looney (Seattle Pacific coach), Travis DeCuire (Cal assistant)
Hayford has been a solid coach in the D3 ranks and could be a gem for EWU. The job wasn’t attracting the highest level of coaching candidates, so the selection of Hayford was a good one. But he’s still unproven at the D1 level. But this C+ could become an A real fast if EWU can rise to the top of the Big Sky.
Sydney Johnson (Princeton coach)
Fairfield Basketball coach Candidates:
Bob Simon (Fairfield assistant), Jim Ferry (LIU coach), Dave Leitao (former UVA coach), John Dunne (St. Peter’s coach), Aki Collins (Marquette assistant)
Others: Sydney Johnson (Princeton coach), Norm Roberts (former St. Johns coach), Pat Skerry (Pitt assistant), Andre LaFleur (Uconn assistant), Paul Hewitt (former GA Tech coach)
Likely the biggest coup of a coaching move this year. Johnson, a Princeton alum might have loved to stay at his alma mater. But the money would never be there and the chance of coaching a championship level school would be a tough task. But Princeton is seldom a type of job where a coach can instantly turn an Ivy League job into a top tier job. Steve Donahue was able to move from Cornell to Boston College, in part because of his experience in the northeast region. In moving to Farifield, Johnson positions himself nicely: he takes over a conference winning program that will be poised to repeat in the regular season. A strong year or two at Fairfield, and Johnson will position himself nicely for a move up the ladder. Especially if a job opens up in the northeast.
Rodney Terry (Texas assistant)
Fresno St. Basketball coach Candidates:
Jeff Boals (Ohio St. assistant), Rex Walters (San Francisco coach), Bob Cantu (USC assistant), Eric Reveno (Portland coach), Jerod Haase (UNC assistant)
Others: Ed Madec (Fresno City College coach), Ernie Kent (former Oregon coach),Vance Walberg (UMass assistant, former Fresno City College coach), Rob Evans (former Arizona St. coach), Mike Dunlap (St. Johns assistant), Senque Carey (Fresno St. assistant), Heath Schroyer (former Wyoming coach), Tim Jankovich (Illinois St.)
No longer a candidate: Wayne Tinkle (Montana coach)
This is one of those hires that is in the C+ to B range. There could be lots of upside as Terry is one of the best assistants in the game. The only knock on the hire could end up being it’s strength. Terry comes from Texas so he’s used to recruiting nationally. He’ll need to continue that as he isn’t an established local California recruiter for the tier of players Fresno st. will attract. So if going the assistant route, you’d think a guy like USC’s Bob Cantu would have risen to the top if going the assistant coach route. But with Fresno St joining the MWC, and the MWC losing TCU, it opens up an interesting twist. If Terry can tap even some of the Texas recruiting potential along with California, this could be a great hire. Fresno took an interesting path with this hire…former head coaches were in the mix, existing ones with local ties, local assistants, and national assistants like Terry and Ohio St.’s Jeff Boals.
Clem Johnson (Alaska-Fairbanks coach)
Potential FAMU Basketball coach Candidates:
Florida Gulf Coast:
New coach: Andy Enfield (FSU assistant)
FGCU Basketball coach Candidates:
Finalists: Richard Pitino (Florida assistant), Andy Enfield (FSU assistant), Rick Ray (Clemson assistant)
Confirmed: Dan Hipsher (Alabama assistant), Todd Lickliter (former Iowa coach)
Other confirmed interested: Todd Lickliter (former Iowa coach), Larry Mangino (SMU assistant), Tim Maloney (Baylor assistant), Eric Mussleman (former NBA coach), Jorge Fernandez (Miami assistant), Rodell Davis (ex-Providence assistant), Matt Langel (Temple assistant), Kyle Macy (former Morehouse St. coach), Tom Green (former FDU coach), Pete Froedden (Lipscomb assistant), Jerry Dunn (former Penn St. coach), Ray Harper (WKU assistant)
Others: Jim Les (former Bradley coach), Steve Merfield (Creighton assistant), Rick Skruggs (App St. assistant), Anthony Anderson (FAU assistant)
Confirmed But No Longer a Candidate: Jan van Breda Kolff (former Vanderbilt coach), Casey Alexander (Belmont assistant), Michael White (Ole Miss assistant)
Ensfield is a coach that was on the radar for a number of other schools such as Towson in the CAA. With FGCU getting someone at his level is a minor coup. FGSU could have gone the experience rout with Todd Lickliter or a flashy “name” hire in Florida assistant Richard Pitino. Instead they went the smart route with Ensfield who has helped make FSU a formittable program in the ACC. It will be a tough job, but as a hire, there are no complaints.
Paul Hewitt (former GA Tech coach)
Potential George Mason Basketball coach Candidates:
Mike Lonergan (Vermont coach), Jeff Capel (former VCU coach), Bill Courtney (Cornell coach), Jeff Jones (American coach), Mike Rhodes (VCU assistant), Chris Caputo (GMU assistant), Steve Pikiell (Stony Brook coach), Jim Baron (URI coach)
Others: Scott Cherry (High Point coach), Eddie Beidenbach (UNC-Asheville coach), Craig Esherick (former Georgetown coach)
A solid hire for GMU. Hewitt seemed likely to be off the radar for most higher level conference jobs, so a spot at the CAA school should work nicely. When reviewing the caliber of coaches that were interested in GMU, Hewitt was certainly an attractive one. That coming from the fact that GMU is not a great paying job for a coach. But the GA Tech buyout for Hewitt from his last job, gives him around 7.5 million. So Hewitt is the only coach that financially is in the position to come to GMU without any financial worries. Mike Lonergan was considered one of the top targets being that he’d be coming from an even lower conference school, Vermont in the America East conference. But he’s being considered for the GW job which has more to pay a coach.
Mike Lonergan (Vermont coach)
Potential George Washington Basketball coach Candidates:
Mike Lonergan (Vermont coach), Jeff Capel (former VCU coach), Joe Dooley (Kansas assistant), Jeff Jones (American coach)
Hard to complain about this move, expected to be finalized on May 7th. Should it go through and Lonergan hired, GW would be getting one of the hot low-major coaches in the country. But what makes the move ideal is Lonergans connection to the city of Washington and the region. He was the head coach at Catholic University in DC, winning the D3 national championship. He eventually moved on to Maryland where he served as an assistant under Gary Williams before heading to Vermont to become a head coach. For the now opened Maryland job, Lonergan was considered to be a candidate after some of the bigger names involved in the search. If Lonergan were an assistant at Maryland still, he’d still be a top hire for GW. But his years at Vermont, winning AE championships makes him even more appealing.
Rod Barnes (fired)
New Coach: Ron Hunter (IUPUI coach)
Potential Georgia St. Basketball Coach Candidates:
Paul Graham (GSU assistant coach), Andy Ensfield (FSU assistant), Phil Cunningham (Mississippi St. assistant), Dennis Felton (former Georgia coach), Mark Gottfried (former Alabama coach), Dip Metress (Augusta St. coach)
Hunter has done a solid job at IUPUI in the Summit League and is better known for his humanitarianism work with Samaritans feet. He’s a good coach and can do wonderful things. But as a hire, one can’t help to think Georgia St. could have gone another route. The CAA got a ton of press this tournament. And when a guy like john Calipari talks about your schools job opening, saying it could be a top program, it’s worth swinging for the fences a bit in your coach hire. Instead, GA State was very conservative, hiring a solid head coach with leadership experience. But had GA State hired a guy like Ensfield, someone familiar with the region coming from an ACC program on the rise, the grade might have been higher as there would be more energy brought in.
Brian Gregory (Dayton coach)
Georgia Tech Basketball Coach Candidates:
Confirmed: Brian Gregory (Dayton coach), Chris Mooney (Richmond coach), Doug Wojcik (Tulsa coach), Craig Neal (New Mexico assistant)
Sources: Buzz Williams (Marquette coach), Mark Price (former GT player/assistant coach), Kevin Stallings (Vanderbilt coach), Tubby Smith (Minnesota coach),Chris Mack (Xavier coach), Gregg Marshall (Wichita St. coach), Cuonzo Martin (Missouri St. coach), Brian Gregory (Dayton coach), Scott Drew (Baylor coach), Mark Turgeon (Texas A&M coach), Reggie Theus (NBA assistant), Shaka Smart (VCU coach), Rick Byrd (Belmont coach)
A bit of a thud hire. Gregory has built up and kept Dayton as a strong program in the A10 with his excellent recruiting in the region, coming from Michigan St, where he was an assistant. But GA Tech has the ability to be a glamor job. It’s in the ACC and in the city of Atlanta where so many top recruits come from. But for GA Tech, the hiring was also a money issue. Reports claimed that the school had only $1.5 million allocated for the entire coaching staff. So to draw a top coach, that figure would have to be at least doubled. Note that Alabama’s coach Anthony Grant, hired 2 seasons ago, makes over $2 million with a fairly well compensated staff. GA Tech didn’t seem to have the budget, per reports, for a splash hire. What they got was a good, solid coach who is a proven recruiter. He’ll just need to get used to doing it in a new region.
Tony Jasick ( IPFW assistant)
Dana Fife was hoping to move on to a higher level head coaching job. While he was a candidate at a number of schools, he didn’t get hired. So rather than remain at IPFW, he did the rare move of leaving for an assistant coach position. But the move has more upside: he’ll be a Michigan St., hoping that he’ll be the next branch in the Izzo coaching tree. As the IPFW job would not be one to get looked at by many top candidates, promoting from within was a sound move.
Todd Howard ( IUPUI assistant)
IUPUI Basketball Coach Candidates:
Todd Lickliter (former Iowa coach), Todd Howard (IUPUI assistant), Linc Darner (Florida Southern coach), Jay John (former Oregon St. coach)
Others: Dana Fife (IPFW coach), Stan Gouard (Indianapolis coach), (Jerrance Howard (Illinois assistant), Tarvaris Hardy (Northwestern assistant), Matthew Graves (Butler assistant), Vince Taylor (Minnesota assistant)
When a coach has been an assistant at a school as long as IUPUI, 16 years and running, the only surprise with this hire was that it took so long. As a hire, this is a slam dunk. IUPUI isn’t the type of program that has a ton of options from higher conferences, so promoting a loyal assistant was the best move.
Lewis Preston (Penn St. assistant)
Potential Kennessaw St. Basketball Coach Candidates:
Reported Leaders: Kevin Cantwell (GA Tech assistant), Casey Alexander (Belmont assistant)
Other Candidates: Lewis Preston (Penn St. assistant), Dip Metress (Augusta St. coach), Robert McCullum (former GA Tech assistant), Phillip Pearson (Georgia assistant), Greg Matta (North Cobb Christian HS coach), Derrek Waugh (former Stetson coach)
Preston is a guy with a lots of experience, something a D1 newcomer like KSU needs. The top requirement for KSU is to grow as a program and maintain a positive academic standing for the program. Everything else is bonus.
New Coach: Rob Senderoff (Kent St. assistant)
Potential Kent St. Basketball Coach Candidates:
Dwayne Stephens (Michigan St. assistant), Rob Senderoff (Kent St. assistant), Jayson Gee (Cleveland St. assistant), Jeff Boals (Ohio St. assistant), Rob Murphy (Syracuse assistant), Eric Haut (TCU assistant), Pat Kelsey (Xavier assistant), Mike Helfer (Valdosta St.)
Smooth transition by promoting the top assistant. Kent state has had success with that path. The last coach they hired that wasn’t already an assistant coach was Gary Waters in 1996. He left for Rutgers in 2001 and assistant Stan Heath was promoted. When Heath left for Arkansas in 2002, assistant Jim Christian was promoted. Upon his leaving for TCU in 2008, Geno Ford tookover.
Pat Knight (former Texas Tech coach)
Lamar Basketball Coach Candidates:
Matt Cross (Lamar St-Port Arthor), Pat Knight (former Texas Tech coach), Scott Monarch (Marquette assistant), Tic Price (Lamar assistant), Alvin Brooks (Houston assistant), Glynn Cyprien (Memphis assistant), Jesse Evans (former U SanFrancisco coach), Walter Roese (Hawaii assistant). Terry Evans (UCO coach)
For the level of job, Pat Knight is a strong hire. He’ll bring name recognition to the Lamar program, which might even help if the school upgrades it’s football program and joins the WAC. There are a number of assistant and lower level coaches that could have been good fits though. Scott Monarch at Marquette comes to mind, as well as Matt Cross, the head coach at Lamar St. – Port Arthur. Knight will likely improve the program though and with that, it was a successful hire.
Steve Masiello (Louisville assistant)
Potential Manhattan Basketball Coach Candidates:
Steve Masiello (Louisville assistant), Bob Walsh (Rhode Island College coach), Van Macon (Fordham assistant), Jim Ferry (LIU coach)
No Longer a Candidate: King Rice (Vanderbilt assistant, new Monmouth coach), Scott Padgett (Manhattan assistant), John Dunne (St. Peter’s coach)
Jim Ferry’s rejection of the Manhattan offer saw Steve Masiello’s gain. It’s a solid change. The only negative might be that at some point, when should a school look from outside it’s own history? They did that with their last hire, and it didn’t work out for them. But after Ferry spurned them, they went back to the well. In time, this might prove to be a great hire. and one day, coaches from the lower ranks like Bob Walsh at Rhode island College will eventually get their shot in D1.
New Coach: Mark Turgeon (Texas A&M coach)
Potential Maryland Basketball coach Candidates:
Mike Lonergan (UVM coach), Jeff Jones (American coach), Tubby Smith (Minnesota coach), Jay Wright (Villanova coach), Mike Jarvis (FAU coach), Tommy Amaker (Harvard coach), Mike Brey (Notre Dame coach), Sean Miller (Arizona coach)
A solid hire for Maryland. They shot for the moon with Sean Miller, Jay Wright, Mike Brey, Jamie Jixon and Brad Stevens…and rightly so. Maryland offers top notch facilities, a great fan base, and rich DC/Baltimore/NoVa recruiting. In adding Turgeon, Maryland isn’t getting the huge fish they wanted. But they are getting a proven coach who has paid his dues at Jacksonville St., Wichita St., and most recently at Texas A&M. Maryland is part of the trajectory Turgeon has been on the past decade.
Jim Larranaga (George Mason coach)
Potential Miami Basketball Coach Candidates:
Rob Jeter (Wisconsin-Milwaukee coach), Chris Mooney (Richmond coach), Mike Davis (UAB coach), Jeff Capel (former Oklahoma coach), Billy Kennedy (Murry St. coach), John Pelphrey (former Arkansas coach), Donnie Jones (UCF coach), Mike Jarvis (FAU coach)
Others: Al Skinner (former BC coach), Orlando Antigua (Kentucky assistant)
No Longer a Candidate: Tommy Amaker (Harvard coach)
School not interested: Frank Martin (Kansas St. coach)
A surprising hire. Miami is not the most attractive job, despite being in the ACC. With the stance Larranaga has taken in recent years with new jobs, you’d think he would have moved to one of those more attractive jobs. Even this year, one would think that schools like NC State would have been better off going after Larranaga than their eventual hire. Miami could have received an A grade if they had brought in Frank Martin. It remains a mystery as to clearly why they had no interest in a coach who wanted to be at Miami. Overall, Larranaga is a solid hire.
Frank Haith (Miami coach)
Missouri Basketball Coach Candidates:
Steve Alford (New Mexico coach), Shaka Smart (VCU coach), Doug Wojcik (Tulsa coach), Chris Mooney (Richmond coach), Mick Cronin (Cincinnati coach), Gregg Marshall (Wichita St. coach), Dave Rose (BYU coach), Scott Sutton (Oral Roberts coach), Mark Fox (Georgia coach), Den Jacobsen (UNI coach), Melvin Watkins (Missouri assistant)
No Longer a Candidate: Matt Painter (Purdue coach), Brian Gregory (Dayton coach), Josh Pastner (Missouri coach)
Nothing would make me happier than being proved wrong here. Missouri swung for the fences with Painter, trying to lure him from his alma mater with a contract over $2 million a year. They then tried Tubby Smith. But at that point, it seems that Missouri lost patience and no longer wanted to go through the task of aiming high and taking small steps down. instead, Missouri went for Frank Haith, a coach that was likely in his final season at Miami unless that program had a massive turnaround. With due respect to Haith, his performance over his time at Miami was seemingly putting him on a path for a step down from Miami, meaning a job at a CUSA or WAC school. Instead, he got a promotion from Miami to Missouri, a school that was offering more money and has had more basketball success than Miami.
Dave Calloway (fired)
King Rice (Vanderbilt assistant)
Potential Monmouth Basketball Coach Candidates:
Sources: John Dunne (St. Peter’s coach), Kevin Boyle (St. Patricks HS coach), Matt Langel (Temple assistant), Geoff Arnold (St. Joseph’s coach), Van Macon (Rutgers assistant), Pat Skerry (Pitt assistant), Darren Savino (Cincinnati assistant), Jason Donnelly(Villanova assistant), Geoff Billet (CBA HS coach)
Others: King Rice (Vanderbilt assistant), John Dunne (St. Peter’s coach), Mike Brennan (Georgetown assistant), Martin Ingelsby (Notre Dame assistant), Dan Earl (Penn St. assistant), Jim Fox (Davidson assistant), Bob Walsh (College of Rhode Island coach), Greg Herenda (UMass-Lowell coach), Craig Carter (Siena assistant)
King Rice is a real up and comer coach . This could very well have been an “A” ranking. Monmouth had many options, including guys with more NJ/NY experience than Rice. But even hot young coach starts somewhere, and Monmouth is hoping Rice can build up their program. If he succeeds and leaves, so be it, the program will still be in a better spot. The job itself might be tough. Reports claim that during the interview procress, one of the goals was to build the program to a level where Monmouth would be positioned for at-large tournament bids. That’s a stretch.
Paul Lusk (Purdue assistant)
Missouri St. Basketball Coach Candidates:
Paul Lusk (Purdue assistant), John Harris (Missouri St. assistant, new Tennessee assistant), Scott Sutton (Oral Roberts coach), Pat Knight (former Texas Tech coach), Jeff Boals (Ohio St. assistant), Tim Buckley (Indiana assistant), Todd Lickliter (former Iowa coach), Keno Davis (former Providence coach), Jerrance Howard (Illinois assistant), Richard Pitino (Florida assistant), Tarvaris Hardy (Northwestern assistant), Matthew Graves (Butler assistant), Vince Taylor (Minnesota assistant)
Interesting chain of events. Purdue coach Matt Painter almost left for the Missouri job. Had he gone, Purdue assistant Paul Lusk likely would have been the top candidate to replace him. Painter opted to stay, so Lusk left for the head coaching job at Missouri St. Lusk has been on the radar for a number of head coaching jobs. And Missouri St. in the Missouri Valley Conference is a good one, especially following the success of Cuonzo Martin.
Billy Kennedy (resigned)
Potential Murray St. Basketball coach Candidates:
Steve Prohm (Murray St. assistant), Phillip Pearson (Georgia assistant)
Like many schools who were faced with late season coach defections, beggars can’t be choosers. Prohm is a fine coach and would have been a candidate at any time. But you figure Murray St. would have looked at other coaches had they had more time.
Ed DeChellis (Penn St. coach)
Potential Navy Basketball coach Candidates:
Eugene Burroughs (Navy assistant), Mike Jarvis II (FAU assistant), Joe Burke (Skidmore coach), Jimmy Allen (Army assistant), Nathan Davis (Randolph Macon coach)
Navy lost their coach late in the coaching change season when Lange left for the Villanova assistant coach job. Things did not look good. But Navy was not only able to find a new coach, but was able to get one from a BCS conference school who just got his team an at-large bid into the tourney. Ed DeChellis might have been on shaky ground at PSU, but it’s a clear win for Navy. As a hire, it’s almost as good as it gets.
North Carolina St.:
Mark Gottfried (former alabama coach)
Potential NC State Basketball Coach Candidates:
Shaka Smart (VCU coach), Mark Turgeon (Texas A&M coach), Gregg Marshall (Wichita St. coach), Mick Cronin (Cincinnati coach)
Not interest in being a candidate: Sean Miller (Arizona coach), Chris Mooney (Richmond coach), Chris Mack (Xavier coach), Rick Barnes (Texas coach), Josh Pastner (Memphis coach), Mike Brey (Notre Dame coach), Mark Fox (Georgia coach), Tubby Smith (Minnesota coach)
Gottfried is a good coach. But it’s important to remember he’s been out of coaching since being fired by Alabama. And any time you hire an unemployed coach versus getting an existing coach to come aboard, it’s not a great sign. NC State and it’s AD Yow reached out to a number of coaches, each to just reject the school. Some were coaches at top schools, like Sean Miller at Arizona. And others were up-and-comers like Shaka Smart. But the list of uninterested coaches was long with names like Josh Pastner at Memphis, Chris Mack at Xavier. But when it got down to a rejection by Wichita St. coach Greg Marshall, a guy who took the WSU job after leaving his comfort zone (Carolinas) to help boost his profile STILL turns you down…in his basketball backyard…you know something is amiss. In the end, NC State had to turn to ESPN to fill it’s coaching void. Not a Big East or Big 12 school. Not an A10 or CUSA school. And not even a mid-major school from the SoCon, CAA, Horizon, etc. Instead, they got a guy fired from his last coaching job. That should hopefully lower expectations for the NC State fan-base and make this hire something that will work.
Mark Montgomery (Michigan St. assistant)
NIU Basketball Coach Candidates:
Finalists: Mark Montgomery (Michigan St. assistant), Paul Lusk (Purdue assistant), Ray Giacoletti (Gonzaga assistant), Tim Buckley (Indiana assistant)
Others: Rick Ray (Clemson assistant), Scott Nagy (SDSU coach), Keno Davis (former Providence coach), Lamont Paris (Wisconsin assistant), Jim Les (former Bradley coach), Jerrance Howard (Illinois assistant), Paul Lusk (Purdue assistant). Mark Montgomery (Michigan St. assistant), Todd Lickliter (former Iowa coach)
Another hire that could easily be an A. Montgomery has been a trusted soldier on Tom Izzo’s Michigan St. staff. He now will take that experience to NIU to turn around that program. With his recruiting ties in the region, NIU should feel a quick impact in the quality of players coming in. At Michigan St., Montgomery helped get some of the best in the nation and in Michigan. He’ll likely be able to bring players to NIU that normally wouldn’t have made the MSU cut because of the higher expectatons…but still players that will fit into Montgomery’s system.
Michael White (Ole Miss assistant)
Potential LA Tech Basketball Coach Candidates:
Chad McDowell (LSU-Shreveport coach), Joe Pasternak (UNO coach), Dave Simmons (McNeese St. coach), Steve Forbes (former Tennessee assistant), Wayne Morgan (Hofstra assistant), Mike McConathy (Northwestern St. coach), Michael White (Ole Miss assistant)
LA Tech is in a tough spot. They are in a conference with members as far as 3 times zones away. But needed someone with local ties to build a program. They got that in Michael White. There weren’t many high options for LA Tech. High is solid, but eventually, someone in D1 is going to have to hire LSU-Shreveport coach Chad McDowell, and LA Tech could have taken that chance.
Lon Kruger (UNLV coach)
Potential Oklahoma Basketball Coach Candidates:
Terry Evans (Central Oklahoma coach), Doug Wojcik (tulsa coach), Gregg Marshall (Wichita St. coach), Tad Boyle (Colorado coach), Steve Alford (New Mexico coach)
No longer a candidate: Lon Kruger (UNLV coach), Cuonzo Martin (Missouri St. coach), Buzz Williams (Marquette coach), Bruce Weber (Illinois coach), Dave Rose (BYU coach)
Oklahoma was passed over by a number of top coaches. So int he end, OU relied on money to land a big fish. Oklahoma is a good job and Kruger had few other options this year. He actually was reported as passing on the job only to have OU come back with more money. In the end, it’s almost a lateral move from UNLV, but one that will pay much more. And in the Big 12, Oklahoma can have a slightly down season and still get a tournament bid, something that is not assured in the Mountain West, especially with BYU leaving.
New Coach: Marty Wilson (Pepperdine assistant coach)
This was an expected transfer of power as Wilson was groomed to take over for Asbury. But Pepperdine hasn’t done much in the WCC over a period where a number of schools have succeeded (Gonzaga, St. Mary’s, San Diego). So time will tell if Wilson can upgrade the Pepperdine program.
Mitch Henderson (Northwestern assistant)
Potential Princeton Basketball Coach Candidates:
Mike Brennen (Georgetown Assistant), Brian Earl (Princeton assistant), Mitch Herderson (Northwestern assistant), Mike Maker (Williams coach), Tony Newsome (Princeton assistant)
Hard to argue with a Princeton coaching hire as they’ve likely thought it out. With Henderson, Princeton is bringing back one of their own. And he has experience, perhaps the best for Princeton: he’s been an assistant under former Princeton coach Bill Carmody at Northwestern.
New coach: Ed Cooley (Fairfield coach)
Former Providence Coach Candidates:
Pat Chambers (BU coach), Pat Skerry (Pitt assistant), Jim Larranaga (George Mason coach), Bill Coen (Northeastern coach), Al Skinner (former BC coach), Fran Fraschilla (former coach), Tom Herrion (Marshall coach), Ron Everhart (Duquesne coach)
Reportedly not a candidate: Jim O’Brien (former BC/Ohio St. coach)
Cooley is a New Englander, from Providence, experience working at Boston College under Al Skinner, and built a solid program at nearby Fairfield. So who’s better for Providence than a guy from Providence with that much experience in the region? Schools like St. John’s have shown recently that you don’t have to be a football power school in the Big East to be successful and that there is still room at the top for the non-football schools other than Villanova and Georgetown. Cooley’s tasks won’t be easy. But if he can keep some of the New England talent in the region, picking up even just a few higher ranked recruits, he can turn Providence around.
New Coach: Mike Jones (VCU assistant)
Potential Radford Basketball coach Candidates:
Jim Corrigan (ODU assistant), Mike Young (Wofford coach), Ron Bradley (former Radford caoch)
Benny Moss (former UNCW coach), Karl Hobbs (former GW coach)
A nice hire. Radford was in a tough spot with a late season firing. And getting an assistant from the hot name program VCU is a good step.
Roman Banks (Southeastern Louisiana assistant)
Potential Southern Basketball Coach Candidates:
Not much to say quite yet. Coach and AD fired in same week, new coach comes in.
Casey Alexander (Belmont assistant)
Potential Stetson Basketball Coach Candidates:
Casey Alexander (Belmont assistant), Steve Ridder (Embry-Riddle coach), Rob Wilkes (Old Dominion Assistant), Jorge Fernandez (Miami assistant)
Solid hire for Stetson. Alexander was involved with a number of other openings this year, so it’s Stetson’s gain. Stetson is hoping Alexander can instill some of the same success as his mentor Rick Byrd has at Belmont.
New Coach: Counzo Martin (Missouri St. coach)
Potential Tennessee Basketball Coach Candidates:
Report: Shaka Smart (VCU coach), Donnie Jones (UCF coach)
Others: Anthony Grant (Alabama coach), Tad Boyle (Colorado coach), Rick Byrd (Belmont coach), Shaka Smart (VCU coach), Chris Mooney (Richmond coach), Buzz Williams (Marquette coach), Mark Turgeon (TAMU coach), Gregg Marshall (Wichita St. coach), Cuonzo Martin (Missouri St. coach), Houston Fancher (Tennessee interim coach/former App St coach)
Rejected Offer: Chris Mack (Xavier coach)
Not a candidate: Lawrence Frank (NBA assistant/former Tennessee assistant)
Longshot: Larry Brown (former NBA coach considering move back to college ranks)
Cuonzo Martin is an excellent coach, there is no debating it. But for Tennessee, it’s a tough call. There are impending potential sanctions on the program that effected the types of coaches the school could go after. So we knew they would not be able to attract the Anthony Grant type of candidates until all NCAA issues are resolved. So martin was exactly the type of candidate that was available to the school. So they over achieved in that sense. But if Bruce Pearl had left for another job and the program has no issues, Tennessee would have been a coveted position in the coaching ranks, a job that Martin likely would not have been able to easily get.
New Tennessee Tech coach:
Steve Payne (Tennessee Tech assistant)
Another retirement with an assistant being promoted. Time will tell.
New Coach: Billy Kennedy (Murray St. coach)
Potential Texas A&M Basketball coach Candidates:
Jeff Van Gundy (former NBA Houston coach), Doug Wojcik (Tulsa coach), Scott Spinelli (TAMU assistant), Bob Marlin (ULL coach), Johnny Jones (UNT coach), Tad Boyle (Colorado coach), Fran Fraschilla (former UNM coach), Gregg Marshall (Wichita St. coach), Tommy Amaker (Harvard coach), Doc Sadler (Nebraska coach), Billy Kennedy (Murry St. coach), Larry Brown (former NBA coach), Ben Jacobsen (UNI coach)
Not Candidates: Buzz Williams (Marquette coach), Josh Pastner (Memphis coach)
It was clear from the start that TAMU wasn’t going to land an A coach…the school wasn’t going to offer enough to get that caliber as evident by the rejections from coaches like Williams, Pastner and Marshall. But TAMU got a good one, which is as good as an A this late in the game. Kennedy has been mentioned for even higher profile jobs than TAMU, so this hire is a win.
Texas A&M – Corpus Christi:
New Texas A&M – Corpus Christi coach:
Willis Wilson (Memphis assistant)
Texas A&M – CC Basketball Coach Candidates:
Source: Willis Wilson (Memphis assistant), King Rice (Vanderbilt assistant)
There wasn’t much interest in the TAMU-CC job compared to other D1 Texas openings. But the two noted candiates were both strong. What Willis brings is head coaching experience within Texas, which he gained as the Rice head coach. But he also improved his level of coaching by working at Memphis with the Calipari/Pastern program. TAMU-CC has gone the route of former head coaches like Perry Clark (Miami, Tulane), but the advantage Willis seems to have is understanding the state of Texas and being able to have a strong program without top rated recruits.
Pat Knight (fired)
Billie Gillispie (former UK, TAMU, UTEP coach)
Former Potential Texas Tech Basketball Coach Candidates:
Gregg Marshall (Wichita St. coach), Buzz Williams (Marquette coach), Joe Dooley (Kansas assistant)
No longer candidate: Doc Sadler (Nebraska coach)
When a coach has off the court issues, they are forced to serve a penance. Gillispie served his and it will be Texas Tech’s gain. Gillispie is argueably the architect behind reviving UTEP basketball, and taking TAMU to a higher level. He left for UK, which was not the ideal fit. But the Texas boy is now back home in Texas, not far from where he spent his early years. And he’s not going to have to do this at a Sunbelt or CUSA level at school…he’s in the Big 12. To think it will take 0-1 years for Texas Tech to be a tournament team is be no means a stretch.
Pat Skerry (Pitt assistant)
Towson Basketball Coach Candidates:
Not a candidate: Pat Kelsey (Xavier assistant), Russell Springmann (Texas Assistant), Todd Bozeman – (Morgan St. Head Coach), Jim Corrigan (Old Dominion assistant) Mike Lonergan (Vermont Head Coach), Jim Christian – (TCU Head Coach)
Towson was set for a B grade simply if they had hirired an asistant coach and not a retread former head coach. but in Skerry, they get on of the top assistants in the game. With his experience in the northeast and more recently at Pitt, he’ll be able to lure better quality recruits to Towson. Time will tell if Skerry will be able to prove to be a good X’s and O’s coach.
Dave Rice (BYU assistant)
Potential UNLV Basketball Coach Candidates:
Reggie Theus (former NMSU coach), Dave Rice (BYU assistant), Mike Dunlap (St. Johns assistant), Ernie Kent (former Oregon coach)
It can be argued that no school had a more attractive pool for their hiring when put into perspective. Sure, UNLV isn’t the same flashy program it was in the 90’s. But for a coach hire, they actually might have benefited from the departure of Kruger, a rarity since he has done such a good job. But in the top 2 candidates, Dave rice and Reggie Theus, UNLV had not just 1 but 2 coaches who could actually improve the program. Both are former UNLV players with Theus also a former NBA coach. In the end, the choice was Dave Rice. Rice is a guy who seemed ready to be a head coach and there might not be a better place for him than his old school. His brother is a high school coach in Las Vegas at Bishop Gorman. And you can be sure that whatever top recruits come from there will be shuffled along to UNLV. The other two candidates were Mike Dunlap and Ernie Kent …both of whom might have kept this as a B-B+ hire. And then there was Larry Brown who spoke with the school. What makes this hire so good is that if things dont’ work out, you still have Theus available 5 years from now assuming he’s not coaching at one of the higher level conference schools.
Larry Krystkowiak (NBA Nets assistant)
Utah Basketball Coach Candidates:
Larry Krystkowiak (NBA Nets assistant), Mark Gottfried (former Alabama coach)
Others: Trent Johnson (LSU coach), Blaine Taylor (ODU coach), Stew Morrill (Utah St. coach), Randy Rahe (Weber St. coach), Mike Dunlap (St. John’s assistant)
Longshot: Tony Bennet (UVA coach)
This ia a bit of a “thud” hiring. Utah has been at a level higher than most MWC schools other than UNLV. It’s had great coaches in the past such as Majerus. Now Utah is heading to the more prestigious Pac-12 and decided to let go of head coach and former NBA assistant Jim Boylen, 2 years removed from being in the NCAA tourney. So what is there first move enroute to the Pac-12? They hire an NBA assistant coach. The school was rebuffed by St. Mary’s coach Randy Bennett, a clear home run pick. Reports say money was not the issue, so we can only guess that maybe Bennett has his eyes on a job like Stanford that could open next season. But even after Bennett, there seemed to be better options than the former Montana coach Krystkowiak . You have coaches with Pac-12 recruiting ties as options, both at the assistant level and head coaches that were interested. You have successful head coaches in the region that would be interested. But instead, the Utah search was between Krystkowiak and Gottfied, who has been out of coaching since leaving Alabama. Even other MWC coaches could have been pressed hard like Dave Rice, the former UNLV player and current BYU assistant. the hiring might serve to be fine. But it lacked the energy you’d expect for a school moving to the Pac-12 this year.
Bryce Drew (Valpo assistant)
Too early to tell in the case of a father retiring and son taking over.
Mike Lonergan (resigned)
New coach: John Becker (UVM Assistant)
Potential Vermont Basketball coach Candidates:
Pat Duquette (Northeastern assistant), Mike Maker (Williams coach), John Becker (UVM assistant), Ralph Chillious (Washington assistant), Mike Jarvis II (FAU assistant),
Others: Bob Walsh (College of RI coach), Will Voight (NBDL Bakersfield coach)
Source: No longer a candidate: Jeff Brown (Middlebury coach)
Not a candidate: Hajj Turner (Vermont assistant)
With such a late season coach change, UVM was in a tough spot. They were not going to be able to take the time like with Brennen’s retirement to find the “next guy” in a national up and coming assistant like Lonergan was. Rather than consider the D3 options they were looking at, or an assistant with moderate success, UVM opted to stick with what they know. Becker was not the top assistant under Lonergan, but a coach the players wanted.
Heath Schroyer (fired)
Larry Shyatt (Florida assistant)
Potential Wyoming Basketball Coach Candidates:
Larry Shyatt (former Wyoming coach/current Florida assistant), Steve Gosar (Southern Idaho coach), Blaine Taylor (ODU coach), Billy Kennedy (Murray St. coach), Eric Reveno (Portland coach), Mike Dunlop (St. John’s assistant), Wayne Tinkle (Montana coach), Dave Rice – BYU assistant, Jeremy Cox (USF assistant)
Others: Fred Langley – Wyoming Interim Head coach, Johnny Jones – UNT coach, Joe Dooley – Kansas assistant
Certainly no knock on Shyatt with this grade. The grade has more to do with the school’s process. The MWC is going through a transition and right now, Colorado St. coach Tim Miles, in his 4th year at the school, is tied for the longest tenure (with BYU leaving the MWC and Kruger going to Oklahoma). So it’s an open audition for a MWC school to step up and replace BYU. So Wyoming could have gone harder after the likes of Eric Reveno or Mike Dunlap. Or even Dave Rice. Instead, the settled back into a previous Wyoming head coach in Shyatt. And we’re not talking about a young assistant coming in from a top program like Florida.
4/13/11: HIRING: Report – SELA Assistant to Southern
4/10/11: HIRING: UNLV Hires Dave Rice
4/09/11: HIRING: Manhattan Hires Louisville Assistant
4/07/11: HIRING: Fresno St. Hires Texas Assistant
4/06/11: HIRING: Kent St. Promotes Senderoff
4/05/11: Ramsey Out at Eastern Michigan
4/05/11: Spivrey Out at Southern
4/05/11: HIRING: Mark Gottfried Hired at NC State
4/05/11: HIRING: Lamar Hires Pat Knight
4/04/11: HIRING: Fairfield Hires Sydney Johnson
4/01/11: HIRING: Towson Gets Pat Skerry
4/03/11: HIRING: Haith Leaves Miami for Missouri
4/03/11: HIRING: Loyola Hires Moser
4/03/11: HIRING: Dayton to Hire Archie Miller
4/03/11: HIRING: Utah Hires Krystkowiak
4/01/11: HIRING: Purdue Assistant to Missouri St.
4/01/11: HIRING: Report – Oklahoma To Hire Lon Kruger
3/31/11: HIRING: Shyatt Back to Wyoming
3/30/11: HIRING: CBSUB Hired Rod Barnes
3/30/11: UC Davis Coach Out
3/30/11: Alabama coach out after 25 Year Run
3/30/11: HIRING: FGCU To Name Enfield New coach
3/29/11: HIRING: Report – Monmouth to Hire King Rice
3/29/11: HIRING: Report – LA Tech to hire Ole Miss Assistant
3/28/11: HIRING: EWU Hires Haywood
3/27/11: HIRING: Alcorn St. Makes It’s Pick
3/27/11: HIRING: Bradley Hires Kent St. Coach, Geno Ford
3/27/11: HIRING: Missouri St. coach Martin to Tennessee
3/24/11: HIRING: Willis Wilson Reportedly Next TAMU-CC coach
3/23/11: Louisiana Tech Coach Rupp Out
3/23/11: HIRING: Mich St Assistant Montgomery to Northern Illinois
3/23/11: HIRING: Anderson Leaving Missouri for Arkansas
3/23/11: HIRING: Tennessee Tech Coach Retires, Assistant Promoted
3/22/11: HIRING: Providence Hiring Cooley
3/21/11: Pearl Out at Tennessee
3/20/11: HIRING: IUPUI Coach to GA State
3/20/11: REPORT – Mike Anderson Remaining at Missouri
3/20/11: HIRING: Texas Tech to Hire Gillispie, Announcement on Wed
3/17/11: Florida A&M Coach Harris Out
3/15/11: Source: Cleveland Out as Fresno St. Coach
3/15/11: Davis Out at Colgate
3/15/11: Lowe Resigns at NC State
3/14/11: Lamar Relieves Roccaforte
3/14/11: Whitesell Out at Loyola
3/14/11: Capel Fired at Oklahoma
3/13/11: Arkansas Ousts Pelphrey
3/12/11: Utah Fires Jim Boylen
3/12/11: Hewitt Out at Georgia Tech
3/11/11: Smith Out at Alcorn
3/10/11: CSU-Bakersfield Coach Out
3/10/11: Pepperdine’s Asbury Retires, Wilson Promoted
3/9/11: Rohrssen Fired From Manhattan
3/9/11: Davis, Providence Part Ways
3/9/11: NIU Coach Out
3/8/11: FGCU coach Balza Out
3/7/11: TAMU-CC fires Clark
3/7/11: Towson Parts with Kennedy
3/7/11: Kennessaw St. Fires Coach
3/7/11: Earlywine Out at EWU
3/7/11: Texas Tech Fires Pat Knight
3/6/11: Bradley Parts with Les
2/28/11: Georgia St. fires Barnes
2/27/11: Monmouth coach resigns
2/26/11: Stetson coach Waugh Out
2/7/11: Wyoming Fires Heath Schroyer