Brad Stevens says no to UCLA basketball coaching job
UCLA will not have Brad Stevens as a its basketball coach, according to a person familiar with the situation who was not authorized to speak on the matter.
Stevens will remain at Butler, where he has led the Bulldogs to two appearances in the national championship game since 2010. ESPN first reported the story.
UCLA Athletic Director Dan Guerrero had focused his attention on Stevens this week after Virginia Commonwealth’s Shaka Smart removed himself from the board by agreeing to a contract extension.
Stevens was Guerrero’s first choice, but now he does not have Smart to fall back on.
So where does that leave the search? Square One, with the hope that Louisville’s Rick Pitino or Florida’s Billy Donovan will be interested once their teams are done in the NCAA tournament.
If the Pitino-Donovan scenario, considered unlikely, fails to materialize, Guerrero could have a public relations problem.
There are still viable candidates, one close to home. Wichita State’s Gregg Marshall has the Shockers in the West Regional final. Marshall may be intrigued by the job, but whether he is equally intrigued by the Los Angeles area beyond this weekend remains to be seen.
Marshall’s name has surfaced with UCLA officials, the person who is close to the department said.
Guerrero could also consider a former NBA coach, something that was said to be part of the game plan going in.
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