College Basketball

After Ewing Firing, Georgetown Turns Focus To Providence’s Ed Cooley

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Georgetown University, a Big East Conference stalwart and one of the most storied programs in the history of the Big East, is on the hunt for a new men’s basketball coach following the abrupt firing of Patrick Ewing on Thursday. The Hoyas hoops program is committed to returning to the level of excellence their fans were so used to for so many years.

All Eyes On Cooley

According to Jeff Goodman, a reputable insider at Stadium, Georgetown is eyeing Providence’s highly-regarded head coach, Ed Cooley, as a potential candidate for the top job. Goodman’s sources indicate that Cooley is receptive to the possibility of moving to the nation’s capital.

Cooley is in his 12th season at Providence. The 53-year-old has a 242-152 record and six tournament appearances with the Friars. They have won at least 21 games in each of the past two seasons and advanced to the Sweet 16 in 2021. Providence is currently projected to be a No. 10 seed in the 2023 NCAA tournament by ESPN’s Joe Lunardi. The Friars were just eliminated by UCONN in the Big East Quarterfinals 73-66.

The Patrick Ewing Era

Ewing, widely considered the greatest player in Georgetown basketball history, took over the reins of the Hoyas in 2017 after a distinguished career as an assistant coach in the NBA. He inherited a program that had hit a rough patch, suffering two consecutive losing seasons under John Thompson III. With Ewing at the helm, the Hoyas aimed to reclaim their status as a powerhouse in the college basketball landscape.

However, despite some promising moments, including an appearance in the 2021 NCAA Tournament, Ewing’s tenure ended earlier this week.

There were minor improvements under Ewing’s watch, with a .500 record in his first season and a 19-14 record in 2018-19. Georgetown made the NCAA tournament during the 2020-21 season for the first time in six years after winning the Big East tournament title. Entering the tournament as a No. 12 seed, Georgetown lost 96-73 to Colorado in the first round. Things bottomed out for the program over the past two seasons with a 13-50 record, though, including an 80-48 loss to Villanova in the Big East tournament on Wednesday in what turned out to be Ewing’s final game.

Hoya fans will have to be patient as Cooley and his Providence squad have the ability to win a few NCAA Tournament games bringing them to the second weekend of the tournament and elongating how long Georgetown will have to wait until they formally contact the Providence head coach.