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Nearly three weeks ago Georgia Southern announced the decision to fire head coach Charlton Young, with the former Georgia Tech posting a record of 43 wins and 84 losses in four seasons at the Southern Conference school.
Georgia Southern may once again go the ACC assistant route with its new hire, as it was reported by Jeff Goodman of CBSSports.com that the school is set to hire Virginia Tech assistant Mark Byington.
Byington was a member of James Johnson’s staff this past season, with the Hokies finishing with a record of 13-19 (4-14 ACC). Virginia Tech didn’t have much in the way of depth, struggling to provide point guard Erick Green (25.0 ppg) with the support he needed on a consistent basis. Despite Virginia Tech’s struggles Green was named ACC Player of the Year.
Prior to joining Johnson in Blacksburg, Byington spent nine seasons on Bobby Cremins’ staff at the College of Charleston. Byington was Cremins’ top assistant during his final six seasons at the school, which is also a member of the Southern Conference so there is some familiarity in that regard.
“I felt where we needed to go is beyond where we are at right now and that a change in leadership is necessary,” Georgia Southern athletics director Tom Kleinlein stated in the release announcing the decision to replace Young.
Georgia Southern loses just two seniors from this season’s squad, most notably guard C.J. Reed. Rising senior Eric Ferguson (13.5 ppg, 6.2 rpg) is the team’s leading returning scorer and rebounder.
With Georgia Southern moving to the Sun Belt in 2014 next season is an important one in regards to turning things around, and it looks as if the school has found the coach they deem capable of rejuvenating the program.
Photo credit: Paul Zoeller/Charleston (S.C.) Post and Courier