After leading the La Salle basketball program to its first Sweet 16 appearance since 1955, head coach Dr. John Giannini was in line to receive a reward from the school in the form of a contract extension.
On Thursday the school announced that an agreement has been reached on a multi-year extension. Since receiving his first extension in 2010, Dr. Giannini has led La Salle to a record of 60-31 with the program tallying consecutive 20-win seasons for the first time since 1990-91.
“This past season was an outstanding one for our men’s basketball team, reaching the Sweet 16 and ending the season with a national ranking,” athletic director Dr. Tom Brennan said in a statement released by the school. “More importantly, Dr. John has built a program on and off the court that gives everyone associated with La Salle great pride.
“John is a proponent of the student-athlete experience, which is very important at La Salle. We are proud to have him leading our program and look forward to his continued success.”
La Salle won 24 games in 2012-13, the program’s highest win total since the 1989-90 season, and Dr. Giannini was named Big 5 Coach of the Year. The Explorers, who lost to Final Four participant Wichita State in the West region semifinals, finished the season ranked 24th in the AP poll.
La Salle loses a very important piece in the form of leading scorer Ramon Galloway. But with guards Tyreek Duren and Ty Garland and forwards Jerrell Wright and Steve Zack all expected to return, the Explorers should be one of the better teams in the Atlantic 10 next season.
Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.
Already lacking depth, No. 13 Iowa State will be short a key contributor Saturday when they take on Oklahoma State in Stillwater.
Friday night it was announced that senior forward Jameel McKay has been suspended indefinitely by head coach Steve Prohm and did not make the trip with the team. McKay, who’s been dealing with knee issues recently, is averaging 12.4 points and a team-high 9.0 rebounds per game on the season.
Over the last six games he’s averaging 7.7 points and 8.7 rebounds per contest, shooting 60.6 percent from the field.
McKay has been asked to man the middle for a team lacking in both size and depth, with Georges Niang shifting over to the five when McKay needs a break for either rest or foul trouble reasons. Without McKay even more responsibility falls upon the shoulders of Niang, Abdel Nader and Deonte Burton in the front court.
The Cyclones are looking to end a two-game losing streak, and even with Oklahoma State’s struggles accomplishing that gets tougher with McKay out of the lineup.
News of McKay’s suspension was first reported by the Ames Tribune.
LAS VEGAS (AP) UNLV junior guard Daquan Cook has been dismissed from the team.
Interim coach Todd Simon made the announcement on Friday, though no reason was given.
Cook was suspended for 13 games by previous coach Dave Rice in November after being arrested and charged with DUI.
Cook appeared in two games this season after being reinstated, scoring three points in four minutes. He missed the 2014-15 season after tearing his right ACL and played 28 games as a sophomore.