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Frank Haith has agreed in principle to a deal to leave Missouri to become the next head coach at Tulsa, according to multiple reports on Thursday afternoon.
Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com and Gary Parrish of CBSSports.com are reporting the deal as done.
Haith might see the writing on the wall with the Tigers. He missed out on the NCAA tournament this past season and will lose Earnest Ross to graduation and Jordan Clarkson and Jabari Brown to the NBA and he had to dismiss Zach Price after Price was arrested twice in one day for allegedly assaulting Ross and his girlfriend. Ross reportedly filed for a restraining order against Price.
Haith does have a solid recruiting class coming in, but another trip to the NIT could have gotten him fired at Missouri. It’s not a bad course of action to leave before you get fired. Cuonzo Martin did it on Tuesday when he left Tennessee for Cal, Gregg McDermott did it when he left Iowa State for Creighton, Herb Sendek did it by taking the Arizona State job. Oliver Purnell has made a career out of leaving before they force you out. You might even be able to argue that Haith did the same when he left Miami for Missouri three years ago.
Tulsa actually should be pretty good next season. They’re coming off of a trip to the NCAA tournament and the core of their team is made up of sophomores.
As of now, Missouri will probably be the best job available. Look for them to go after some of the same guys as Tennessee.
New Utah Valley head coach Mark Pope made quite an impression on fans at the team’s Midnight Madness celebration last night. That’s because Pope did a dance and lip sync routine with his four daughters that turned out to be pretty impressive.
The former BYU assistant looks to be the leader in the clubhouse for best coach dance so far this preseason. We’ll see if any other coaches pull out elaborate routines at madness celebrations the next few weeks.
UConn commit Juwan Durham, a four-star big man in the Class of 2016, has torn the ACL in his right knee for the second time in seven months. The Florida native committed to the Huskies and head coach Kevin Ollie back in September. The 6-foot-9 forward is regarded as the No. 31 overall prospect in the national Class of 2016, so he can really be a force when he’s healthy.
In a report from Tampabay.com’s Bob Putnam, UConn was notified of the injury immediately and there is no change in plans with the commitment. The Huskies also own commitments from four-star point guard Alterique Gilbert and three-star power forward Mamadou Diarra in the Class of 2016. Having Diarra, an active, rim-protecting presence, helps with Durham’s recovery, since he can provide some more front court depth.
If Durham rehabs back to full speed, UConn has a very talented power forward who was just hitting his stride in the Florida state playoffs last February. UConn has a nice class so far with this group, especially if Durham can recover, With a year to recover until next season, Durham can hopefully play during his freshman season in 2016.