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#pounditMonday, May 27, 2024

Rick Pitino rumored as potential coach for 2 Big East teams

Rick Pitino motions with his hand

Iona College men’s basketball head coach Rick Pitino on the sidelines during their game between Iona College and Morgan State at Iona College in New Rochelle, Dec. 8, 2020. Photo Credit: MARK VERGARI/THE JOURNAL NEWS

Rick Pitino is one of the few coaching legends still active in college basketball, and he is being rumored as a possible candidate for a few jobs.

Pitino is in his third season as the head coach at Iona. He has the Gaels 25-7 this season and first in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference with a 17-3 conference record. Pitino has gone 62–21 in his three seasons at Iona and proven that he can still coach successfully at age 70. He’s also avoided trouble with the NCAA. That’s why he’s been mentioned in connection with a few jobs.

Georgetown on Thursday finally fired Patrick Ewing, under whom the program had completely tanked. The Hoyas went 7-25 this season, a year after going 6-25 (including a 0-19 conference performance).

Georgetown used to be a dominant program in college basketball and needs to regain that form. Pitino is the type of coach who could turn them around.

But the Hoyas might have some competition from St. John’s.

The Red Storm lost in the Big East Tournament on Thursday to finish the season 18-15. Though the program hasn’t tanked like Georgetown, they haven’t shown much improvement in four seasons under Mike Anderson, who has gone 68-56.

There is no guarantee that St. John’s will get rid of Anderson, but there is speculation they could consider doing so.

Pitino might not be a long-term solution for a program, but he could likely help turn around a program that has history like Georgetown or St. John’s, and that might be enticing for either school.

During his coaching career, Pitino has made seven Final Fours and won two national championships.


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