Steve Masiello not hired by USF after discovery that he never got degree
One of the more bizarre stories of the year came out on Tuesday when it was revealed that South Florida had backed out of a deal to hire Steve Masiello as its next basketball coach because of a discrepancy in his background check. On Wednesday, The Tampa Tribune reported that Masiello lied on his resume and never completed his bachelor’s degree at the University of Kentucky.
Masiello, who has been at Manhattan the past three seasons and led his team to the NCAA Tournament this year, was a student at Kentucky from 1996-2000. He was a walk-on basketball player for Rick Pitino in his first season and Tubby Smith for three years after that. The UK Office of Public Relations confirmed to The Tampa Tribune that Masiello never got his degree.
Masiello’s biography with Manhattan College says he graduated from UK in 2000 with a degree in communications. He agreed to a five-year deal that would pay him $1 million per season with USF on Tuesday, but the agreement was contingent upon the verification of his resume.
Rick Pitino told ESPN on Wednesday that he was “shocked” to hear that Masiello never graduated.
“When I left (UK for the NBA), he was on track to graduate,” Pitino said, per the Tribune.
USF will now continue its coaching search, and it is unclear if Masiello will be allowed to return to Manhattan. The 36-year-old is considered one of the better young coaches in the country and was praised by Pitino for giving “one of the best coaching jobs” he has ever seen during Louisville’s 71-64 win over Manhattan in the round of 64.
While Masiello’s success on the court speaks for itself, you have to assume he also wrote that he was a graduate of Kentucky on the resume he submitted to Manhattan. How the school reacts to that remains to be seen.