Thursday afternoon James Madison athletic director Jeff Bourne announced that the school has hired Bowling Green assistant Louis Rowe as its new head coach. Rowe, who was a standout as a player at James Madison under then-coach Lefty Driesell from 1993-95, spent five seasons on the JMU coaching staff from 2007-12.
From there he spent time as an assistant at FIU, Rider and Bowling Green before deciding to return to his alma mater as Matt Brady’s replacement. Brady spent eight seasons at the Colonial Athletic Association program, leading the Dukes to the NCAA tournament in 2013.
Brady’s teams won 19 or more games in five of his eight seasons at the helm, including 21 wins this season, but the lack of success in the conference tournament factored into the decision to make a head coaching change. That 2013 CAA tournament title marked the only time during Brady’s tenure in which James Madison managed to reach (at least) the semifinals of the CAA tournament.
Rowe will have to account for the loss of leading scorer Ron Curry, who earned first-team All-CAA honors as a senior.