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The Hurley coaching tree is branching out. Looks like Rhode Island assistant and college basketball legend Bobby Hurley is headed to take over the program at Buffalo.
The news was first reported by CBSSports.com’s Jeff Goodman.
Hurley replaces Reggie Witherspoon, who was 198-228 in his 14 years at the school.
This will be Hurley’s first college head coaching job after spending the last three seasons as an assistant at Wagner, then Rhode Island for his brother, Dan. The brothers are the sons of the legendary high school coach Bob Hurley, Sr.
Name aside, this is a good hire for Buffalo, who finished 14-20 overall, 7-9 in the Mid-American Conference and lost to Kent State in the MAC tournament this season. While he hasn’t been the face of the programs he’s been at, many have been praising Hurley’s ability to teach while under his brother. His name still resonates with a lot of high school coaches — and some players, I’d assume — from his days as Duke’s point guard, winning two national titles, garnering all-America honors and leaving the Blue Devils as the NCAA Division I all-time leader in assists.
It’s also a low-risk job for Hurley. The Bulls have had a decent amount of success recently, but have been mid-pack in the MAC at best. A lot of the buzz around the program is attributed to the talents of Mitchell Watt and Javon McCrea. If Hurley can convince McCrea to stick around for his senior season — he averaged 18 points and 7.9 rebounds this season — he might have the roster (only two seniors on this year’s team) to immediately contend in the MAC.
Follow David Harten on Twitter at @David_Harten