Which coaches have been fired, which jobs are opening up, and which coaches are being looked at as possible replacements? We’ve got everything you need to know about 2016 coaching hirings and firings.
Out: Donnie Jones. CBS Sports’ Ryan Bass was first to report that Jones is out at UCF. The school confirmed in an announcement late Thursday that it has parted ways with the coach. Jones, a longtime assistant at Florida, had led the Knights in Orlando since 2010 but never won more than 13 games since UCF made the move to the American Athletic Conference.
Sources: UCF AD Danny White has informed Donnie Jones that he has indeed been fired. Official announcement likely tomorrow.
— Ryan Bass (@Ry_Bass) March 11, 2016
Out: Bo Ryan, who abruptly announced his immediate retirement in December. Ryan initially said in June that he would coach the season and then step down, but after a 7-5 start to the season, the 68-year-old coach decided to walk away and let Greg Gard coach the team. With 364 wins, Ryan is the winningest coach in Wisconsin history and led the Badgers to the NCAA Tournament in every season of his tenure. Thanks to Greg Gard’s work after the retirement announcement, the Badgers will be dancing again in 2016 too.
In: Greg Gard. Gard coached Bo Ryan for 23 years across multiple stops, but his ascension to the full-time job came as a result of his work in 2016. Since losing at Northwestern on Jan. 12, a loss that dropped the Badgers to 1-4 in conference play, Wisconsin has gone 11-2 with wins over Michigan State, Indiana, Maryland, Iowa and Michigan and will certainly be in the NCAA Tournament field.
Out: Dave Rice was fired after five seasons as head coach in January. The former Rebels’ player and assistant coach went 98-54 as the coach in Vegas, but has failed to convert talented rosters into postseason results. After a 9-7 start to 2015-16 and three straight conference losses, Rice agreed to step aside and let Tom Simon take over as the interim head coach.
Out: Kerry Keating. Keating had a losing record at Santa Clara (139-159), where he’s been the head coach since 2007. A strong assistant at Tennessee and UCLA, Keating led Santa Clara to a pair of postseason tournament wins (2011 CollegeInsider.com, 2013 CBI) but never finished higher than fourth in the West Coast Conference standings.
Out: Ron Verlin. Verlin was suspended, along with assistant Dwight Young, amid allegations of academic misconduct that resulted in an NCAA investigation. Interim coach Mike Burns finished the season after Verlin’s suspension in December and Pacific self-imposed a postseason ban for the 2016 season.
Out: John Brady. Brady announced in December his intentions to step down at the end of the 2015-16 season. The former LSU coach won two SEC titles and reached the Final Four in 2006 with the Tigers but has just four winning seasons and no postseason appearances since taking over the Red Wolves’ program in 2008.
Out: Jim Crews. Crews was released moments after the team’s loss to George Washington on Thursday in the Atlantic 10 tournament. Crews, once the interim coach for SLU, had a 77-56 record and took the team to two NCAA tournaments but did not meet his boss’ expectations.
“After reviewing the 2015-16 season and talking with Coach Crews, I have decided that a change in leadership of the men’s basketball program is needed for the program to move forward in meeting our goals,” athletic director Chris May said.
Out: Bruiser Flint. Flint was fired after 15 seasons at Drexel, where the former UMass coach totaled a 245-217 record but bottomed out this season with no Damion Lee, and the 6-25 record at the end of the season sealed his fate.
Loved being a Dragon. Enjoyed the 15yrs. Love my guys and the ppl were great to me. Thanks Drexel
— Bruiser Flint (@ducoachflint) March 7, 2016
North Carolina A&T
Out: Cy Alexander. Alexander resigned in January after the Aggies won five of their first 22 games and were destined for a third-straight season with a losing record. The longtime South Carolina State coach wants to stay involved at A&T and will pursue other opportunities within the athletic department.
In: Jay Joyner. Associate head coach was first promoted to interim head coach after Alexander’s resignation, and now the interim tag removed by the school. The Aggies were 5-3 in MEAC play under Joyner’s leadership, but A&T athletic director Earl Hilton said it was the coach’s “energy and passion along with his ability to get his players to give their best effort on the floor each night” that earned him the full-time gig.
Out: Aki Thomas. Thomas earned the full-time gig after spending a season as the interim coach at UMBC in 2012-13 — taking over following Randy Monroe’s resignation and leading the team a few more wins (7) than expected. But after four straight seasons with single-digit win totals, UMBC fired Thomas in March.