The pressures of coaching claimed another casualty Monday with the resignation of Loyola Marymount Coach Bill Bayno, who had been on medical leave since November for what colleagues described as work-related depression issues.
He will be replaced by Max Good, the assistant who has handled the Lions (1-16) in his absence. Good, 66, agreed to a multi-year deal to remain at the school.
Bayno, 46, was not available for comment but issued a statement.
“Due to medical reasons and on the advice of my doctors, I am resigning from my duties as head men’s basketball coach at Loyola Marymount,” Bayno said. “I sincerely apologize for any disappointment this might cause the fans, the administration, the students and most importantly my players, their families and my coaching staff. I care deeply for them all and I will always be available to help in any way I can in basketball and in life.”
A former NBA assistant who previously was the coach at Nevada Las Vegas, Bayno was on the bench for only three games at Loyola Marymount after being hired by Athletic Director Bill Husak last year.
“We had conversations the last couple of weeks about how it would be difficult to go into next year not knowing if Bill had this issue licked,” Husak said. “Bill agreed that would not be fair to the players, the staff, the fans or anyone at LMU. We talked about trying to come back for the start of the conference season. He just couldn’t do it.”
Freshman Jarred DuBois, who scored 39 points against Cal State Bakersfield in Loyola Marymount’s victory, described Bayno as “a real caring guy” and said the coach was not being selfish.
“He’s doing what is best for everyone else,” DuBois said. “He wanted to put his all into it, and he wasn’t able to be there, mentally, emotionally and physically.”
Husak and Good expressed personal support for Bayno, who had difficulty sleeping and eating during his time as coach and is continuing out-patient treatment, colleagues said.
“Coach, God bless him, is going through stress and anxiety,” Good said. “I think obviously this is very difficult for him. He’s a competitor, and he obviously doesn’t like the perception of him giving up.
“I told him I will not call him. People are inundating him with calls. I don’t think it helps. He feels he disappointed people and let so many down. He’s got to take time out.”
Good said he believes Bayno can return to coaching as an assistant, a job he previously held with the Portland Trail Blazers.
“He said he’s not comfortable being a head coach,” Good said.
“They say one in five people in America have depression issues. He’s a recovering alcoholic but he hasn’t had a drink in seven years. This has nothing to do with drugs or alcohol.”
Husak said he has confidence in Good, who has a 242-236 record in 14 seasons as a coach, including this one, eight at Bryant College in Rhode Island, and stints at Nevada Las Vegas and Eastern Kentucky.
Hit by injuries, Loyola Marymount is starting three freshmen and has only seven scholarship players.
“I can tell you this team has had an unbelievable set of circumstances . . . but every game they’re giving 100%,” Husak said. “That’s a testament to the leadership of Max Good and the staff.
“Unlike last year, when I saw very little hope for success in our future, this year I see a 180-degree difference.”