College hoops coaching carousel continues to turn

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VCU and Kentucky weren’t the only ones making news on Sunday. Two schools hired new coaches – and a third might soon be on the way.

The biggest move among them was Tennessee hiring Cuonzo Martin to replace Bruce Pearl. In three years at Missouri State, Martin, 36, was 61-41. The Bears had a breakthrough season this year, going 26-9 and winning the Missouri Valley title.

 It should be a move that pleases Vols fans, too. (Well, except for one.) Martin isn’t a big-name coach, but his teams thrive on offense and should have a sense of stubborn determination. Call it heart, if you like. Martin’s a guy who had tough circumstances before – hell, he’s had lymphoma – and still wins.

The Missouri Valley lost Martin, but added a coach when Bradley hired Geno Ford. He was 68-37 in three seasons at Kent State and claimed consecutive outright MAC titles. He replaces Jim Les.

One of the coaches rumored to be on many schools’ wish lists won’t be going anywhere, either. Richmond signed Chris Mooney to 10-year contract extension, which runs through 2020-21. He took the Spiders to a 29-8 record and a spot in this year’s Sweet 16.

Another major position might get filled soon. Jeff Goodman reported that Brian Gregory, who’s been at Dayton the past seven seasons, may finally accept the vacant Georgia Tech job. Conflicting reports emerged about Gregory’s job status last week.

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