Published: Fri, April 12, 2019
Sport | By Joe Gonzales

UCLA Has Reportedly Hired A Head Basketball Coach

UCLA Has Reportedly Hired A Head Basketball Coach

A day after Mick Cronin agreed to become the next men's basketball head coach at UCLA, ending his 13-year run in charge of the Bearcats, the details of how and why this transition happened remain somewhat murky. The school had never before fired a coach during the season. Prior to becoming the head coach at Murray State in 2003, Cronin served as a video coordinator and assistant coach at Cincinnati and as the associate head coach at Louisville. "To be able to join such a world-class institution is truly a privilege, and I can't wait to get started in Westwood".

In 2018, Cronin was named Sporting News National Coach of the Year and was also a semifinalist for the 2018 Naismith Trophy National Coach of the Year award.

This is a disappointing hire for UCLA after having whiffed on big-name coaches such as John Calipari, Rick Barnes and Jamie Dixon before settling for Cronin. Dixon and UCLA reportedly hit a snag over UCLA's reluctance to pay the $8 million buyout to separate Dixon from his contract at TCU.

"Throughout what was a thorough and exhaustive search, those of us on the committee repeatedly discussed and emphasized the importance of bringing in a coach who really wants to be here", Myers said in a statement.

UCLA officially announced the hiring of Mick Cronin to lead its basketball program, which has won an NCAA record 11 national championships in its history.

"Mick Cronin is a fierce competitor, and I'm excited to welcome him to Westwood", UCLA athletic director Dan Guerrero said.

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Cronin will be formally introduced to the UCLA community and to media on campus this Wednesday morning.

Twice in the last three years, the Bearcats beat UCLA, including a 29-point rout in December not long before Alford was sacked.

Health issues forced Cronin to miss most of the 2014-15 season as he recovered from an aneurysm that was discovered after he complained of lingering headaches. The school set its sights high, but came up short in its pursuit of a bevy of upper echelon candidates. Campbell had a knee injury and O'Neal had heart surgery. But Kentucky signed John Calipari to a long-term contract extension that should take him to retirement.

The Bruins are coming off a mediocre 17-16 season in 2018-19.

Murry Bartow bowed out of consideration for the permanent job in March.

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