College Basketball

College Basketball Coaches On The Hot Seat

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Coaching in college basketball is a high-stakes game, and last offseason saw no shortage of moves on the chessboard. A total of 64 coaching changes occurred, with 14 occurring within the major conferences that define the sport (ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, Pac-12, and SEC). While some of these shifts were voluntary, such as the retirements of legends Jay Wright and Mike Krzyzewski, most resulted from tough decisions made by athletic directors and university leadership. As we gear up for another round of the coaching carousel, there’s no doubt that more firings will be on the horizon.

Just today Georgetown fired Patrick Ewing. The former Hoyas star who famously led the school to NCAA glory in the early 80s was let go as head coach after a six-year tenure that yielded a record of 75-109.

Let’s take a closer look at some names that could be joining Ewing on the job hunt soon.

Fred Hoiberg – Nebraska

  • 2023 Record: 16-16
  • Overall Record: 40-83

During his time at Iowa State, Fred Hoiberg made a name for himself in college basketball as a mastermind of up-tempo, efficient offenses. His Cyclones teams dazzled fans with a .673 winning percentage and four consecutive NCAA tournament appearances, setting the stage for Hoiberg’s leap to the NBA. However, his return to the college game has been a different story.

In his second stint as a college basketball coach, Hoiberg has struggled to find the same success. The Nebraska Cornhuskers showed some improvement this season, but they remain a .500 team, ranking around the 100th spot in the KenPom rankings and poised to miss the NCAA tournament for the 24th time in 25 years.

And while fans may have expected Hoiberg’s trademark fast-paced offense to come with him to Lincoln, they’ve been sorely disappointed. The team has struggled to find its footing in Hoiberg’s first three seasons and even in his fourth year at the helm. The Cornhuskers are ranked around 200th in the nation in offensive efficiency and 250th in tempo.

It still makes no sense why the Cornhuskers opted to part ways with former head coach Tim Miles, who had a winning record after seven seasons. But with Hoiberg’s tenure hovering around a .300 winning percentage, it may be time for the program to consider a new direction.

Jerod Haase – Stanford

  • 2023 Record: 14-19
  • Overall Record: 112-109

Indeed, coaches at high-major programs typically don’t last seven years without a single NCAA tournament appearance, and that is the run that Stanford is on under Jerod Haase. His tenure at Stanford has been marked by mediocrity. While the Cardinal have been respectable under Haase, they have yet to have any excellent seasons and have been stuck in a cycle of not having any awful seasons but also not having any great ones to get fans excited.

One factor that makes Haase’s job particularly challenging is Stanford’s academic standards, which make it difficult to recruit and compete with other high-major programs that can more easily tap into the transfer portal for talent.

The potential saving grace for Haase is that two top 50 players in next year’s class have committed to the Cardinal. However, given Stanford’s recent inability to make the tournament with talented recruits, it may be worth the risk of starting over with a new coach in order to build a program that can compete at a higher level.


Mark Fox – California

  • 2023 Record: 3-29
  • Overall Record: 38-87

Before Wyking Jones took over, the California Golden Bears were a program that consistently stayed in the mix. Between 1992 and 2017, they reached the NCAA tournament 13 times and were ranked in the AP Top 25 in 13 seasons. Over those 25 years, they never experienced a drought of more than two years where they failed to achieve either of those accomplishments.

Hiring Mark Fox, former head coach of Georgia and Nevada, was expected to help return Cal to its previous level of success.

However, that has yet to be the case.

Fox easily had the worst winning percentage and KenPom rank of his 18-year career this season, as the Golden Bears won a dismal three total games. He came into the season on thin ice after three consecutive losing seasons, and things haven’t improved. The Golden Bears lost to UC Davis, Southern, Texas State, Eastern Washington, and Butler during nonconference play and suffered a poor road loss to UC San Diego.

It seems impossible for Cal to hang on to Fox after one of the worst seasons in program history.


After four seasons of professional baseball in the San Diego Padres system, Colin was featured as a freelance sports writer in numerous publications. He enjoys handicapping and writing about sports wagering while covering the MLB, NBA, NFL, PGA, and multiple college sports. Colin attended and played baseball at St. John's University in Queens, NY. He enjoys traveling with his wife, Ana, and two sons, Enzo and Wes.

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