LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Indiana University confirmed it heard the frustrations of its fan base Monday morning when the school dismissed men’s basketball coach Archie Miller with three years remaining on his seven-year contract.
Athletic Director Scott Dolson was scheduled to address the move Monday afternoon, likely after meeting with the players.
Dolson said this in a statement:
“As the Director of Athletics, I wanted to wait until the conclusion of the season before evaluating the leadership of our men’s basketball program. In the days following the completion of our season in the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament, I have spent a great deal of time evaluating our recruiting, student-athlete development, leadership development, and playing philosophy and strategy. That review, combined with the on-court results, ultimately led me to conclude that a change in leadership of our program is warranted at this time. I shared my assessment with Indiana University President Michael McRobbie, and he accepted my recommendation."
Indiana finished its season 12-15, on a six-game losing streak. The Hoosiers and Miller were booed last Thursday after they lost to Rutgers for the third time this season, 61-50, in the Big Ten Tournament in Indianapolis.
Miller went 67-56 in four seasons. He failed to deliver a winning record in conference play and lost all seven games against Purdue. Miller’s teams also failed to make the NCAA Tournament, although the Hoosiers were a likely tournament pick last season before the tournament was canceled by the novel coronavirus.
Miller will be owed roughly $10.3 million over three years, although the buyout will be offset by any earnings Miller gets a new job.
Dolson must now hire a new coach who can return the Hoosiers to the top of the Big Ten.
Among the candidates that are expected to be considered are: Baylor coach Scott Drew; Alabama coach Nate Oats; Eric Musselman of Arkansas; Michigan State assistant coach Dane Fife; Nevada coach Steve Alford; former Michigan coach John Beilein, former Ohio State coach Thad Matta and Texas Tech coach Chris Beard.
The top candidate would be Celtics coach Brad Stevens, but Stevens appears to be happy in Boston and would not be available until late-May or early-June.
Here is the remainder of Dolson's statement:
"I want to thank Archie Miller, his staff, and their families for their service and commitment to IU and for his unwavering commitment to our student-athletes, the men’s basketball program and Indiana University. We wish Archie and his family all the best in the next steps of their journey.
"Given the university’s very tight financial situation in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, private philanthropic funding has been obtained for all transition costs and obligations related to the change in leadership. We worked to secure the necessary private support following my recommendation to President McRobbie, ensuring that there would be no charges to the university budget.
"Indiana Basketball has a long, rich history of success that dates back generations. Our five national championships and 22 Big Ten titles make us one of the most accomplished programs in college basketball history. I have high expectations for our program, and we have not competed at a level within the conference or nationally that I believe we should.
"While I will not establish a formal search committee, I will consult within the University and with trusted experts in the state and around the country as I seek out and recruit a new coach. The work to find the next leader of Indiana Basketball will begin immediately, and I will seek a chief executive that I can partner with to reestablish the brand and national presence of Indiana Basketball.”
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