NCAA News Wire

CBK roundup: Auburn turns to Pearl

Alan Draper profile picture
Sports Editor
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The Auburn Tigers hired Bruce Pearl, who made six NCAA Tournaments at Tennessee before being fired for recruiting violations, as their next basketball coach on Tuesday.

“I’m humbled and blessed to be back in the game that I love,” Pearl said. “I don’t know how long it will take, but it’s time to rebuild the Auburn basketball program and bring it to a level of excellence so many of the other teams on campus enjoy.”

Pearl, 54, was fired in 2011 after taking Tennessee to the NCAA Tournament in each of his six seasons. He has worked for ESPN as an analyst the past two years.

Auburn fired Tony Barbee last week after the Tigers finished 14-16 and 6-12 in the SEC. He was 49-75 in four seasons at Auburn.

—Virginia Commonwealth shooting guard Melvin Johnson is listed as doubtful with a sprained knee for the fifth-seeded Rams’ NCAA Tournament South Regional opener against No. 12 seed Stephen F. Austin on Thursday in San Diego.

The sophomore was injured in an Atlantic 10 tournament semifinal game against George Washington last weekend. Without him, VCU lost in the A-10 final to Saint Joseph’s. Johnson, who averages 10.5 points per game off the bench, is considered VCU’s best long-range shooter. He hit 39.5 percent of his attempts from behind the arc this season.

—Washington State fired head coach Ken Bone after five years, including a 10-21 record this season, the school announced Tuesday.

Bone has two years left on his seven-year deal with the Cougars, with about $1.7 million remaining to be paid.

Bone was 80-86 in five seasons in Pullman but just 23-40 the past two seasons. Washington State finished 3-15 in the Pac-12 this season.

—Boston College fired coach Steve Donahue after four years and an 8-24 record this season, the school announced Tuesday.

Donahue made no NCAA Tournament appearances with the Eagles, going 33-63 the past three seasons. He was 54-76 at Boston College, including going 4-14 in ACC play this season.

Donahue, 51, was hired in 2010 after taking Cornell to the Sweet 16. Donahue spent 10 years at Cornell, and the team made the NCAA Tournament in each of his final three seasons.

Alan is an experienced writer of online betting and casino guides. He is one of the main editors of Basketballinsiders.

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