Bobby Hurley was a star in his own right, earning three trips to the Final Four as a member of the Duke Blue Devils and going on to play in the NBA. Now he has a different starring role in a different situation, hired this past week to become the next head coach at Buffalo after the firing of coach Reggie Witherspoon.
He inherits a veteran Buffalo team that finished 14-20 last season, including 7-9 in the MAC.
“We have plans right out of the gate to begin to set a high standard,” Hurley told NBCSports.com. “Every transition is difficult. I’ve been involved in two of them in the last three years. There’s uncertainty and players have relationships with prior coaching staffs, but I’ve got a great feeling.”
Hurley comes to Buffalo after serving as an assistant alongside his brother Dan Hurley at Rhode Island. Hurley took over with the Rams after the firing of coach Jim Baron after last season.
“Dan has been exteremely supportive of my decision and it’s a complex thing with all the relationship and how much I’ve enjoyed coaching and working with them,” he said. “I know he’s going to miss for a lot of different reasons, but he understands what a great opportunity this is for me.”
He comes from a great lineage of basketball coaches, including his father Bob, Sr., who has become a legend in New Jersey high school basketball as the coach of St. Anthony in Jersey City, N.J.
His hiring comes at the same time he has linked up with Thuzio, a business that seeks to reconnect athletes with fans online, through speaking engagements and other avenues.
He now moves on to the next step in the process, which is building a staff and working the recruiting trail for his new program.
“I’ve been talking to a lot of people and looking to put together a great staff,” he said. “Looking for people who care about the kids and have their best interest at heart and help them get the job done. That’s the main obstacle.”