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Report: Texas Tech in talks with Tubby Smith to become its next coach

The former Minnesota and Kentucky coach met with Tech officials in Lubbock on Thursday

Posted: March 30, 2013 - 9:31pm  |  Updated: March 31, 2013 - 12:50am
Minnesota head coach Tubby Smith speaks to reporters alongside guard Austin Hollins after learning their NCAA college basketball tournament assignment on Selection Sunday, March 17, 2013, in Minneapolis. Minnesota is scheduled to face UCLA in the second round on Friday in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/The St. Paul Pioneer Press, Scott Takushi)  MINNEAPOLIS STAR TRIBUNE OUT; MAGS OUT  Scott Takushi
Scott Takushi
Minnesota head coach Tubby Smith speaks to reporters alongside guard Austin Hollins after learning their NCAA college basketball tournament assignment on Selection Sunday, March 17, 2013, in Minneapolis. Minnesota is scheduled to face UCLA in the second round on Friday in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/The St. Paul Pioneer Press, Scott Takushi) MINNEAPOLIS STAR TRIBUNE OUT; MAGS OUT
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Texas Tech is in talks with Tubby Smith to become its next head coach, the Associated Press reported late Saturday, citing unnamed sources.

Smith was in Lubbock on Thursday, along with his wife Donna, to meet with Tech officials about the position. He left Texas on Friday, though it wasn’t immediately clear at the time whether he did so with an official offer in hand.

Attempts by the Avalanche-Journal to reach Smith have been unsuccessful.

Tech officials have provided no updates on the search since it began following Tech’s loss to Kansas in the Big 12 Tournament quarterfinals March 14.

It was widely reported that Smith became a front-runner for the position upon his meeting with Tech officials. It was unclear as of Saturday night how far talks between the two sides have progressed.

According to the report, Smith could also receive interest from New Mexico, whose head coach Steve Alford on Saturday signed a deal to become the next coach at UCLA.

Tech is now more than two weeks into a search for its new coach, a position opened when Billy Gillispie resigned in September.

Interim coach Chris Walker guided Tech to an 11-20 record this season and its first win in the Big 12 Conference Tournament since 2010. Athletic Director Kirby Hocutt on March 14 said Walker would be considered a candidate for the permanent position.

Smith, 61, won a national championship as the coach at Kentucky in 1998.

He guided the school to 10 NCAA Tournament appearances in his 10 seasons there.

He wasn’t able to replicate the same success during his six seasons at Minnesota. The Gophers were 46-62 during his tenure there and never finished higher than sixth in the Big 12 Conference.

He was fired from Minnesota last Monday, one day after his team lost to Florida in the Round of 32 in the NCAA Tournament.

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5
4

Forty-six (46) and sixty-two (62), barely beats Krusty !!

So, it would appear hocutt and the admin are bound and determined to make our basketball programs the laughing-stock of all college athletics.

And to think I actually believed kirby was his own man. What a retard I am, and what a wuss he is.

46-62, never finished higher than sixth !!

Good luck selling tickets to that promise.

2
2

There once was ...

a coach at Bumphuket,

whose players threw balls in a bucket,

he said with a grin

as the old man walked in,

here's hoping you've better luck with it.

6
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Chris should stay as well!!!

ok so if we do sign him we just need to hold on to Chris Walker as asst head coach and head of recruiting cause tho Tubby knows some basketball he dont know nothin about Texas hi school basketball. And pay Chris well enough he doesnt leave in the next 2-3 yrs. Ya know??

5
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...

It's a good hire.

No doubt, all those people demanding Walker be hired will be disappointed. Fact is, Walker didn't prove himself. Make all the excuses you want.

7
5

Chris Walker needs to be the head coach period

We don't need a 61-yr old fired half dozen times 46-62 Minnesota didn't want him reject !! WALKER. NOW !!

6
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New Mexico

Walker should start pursuing the New Mexico job. they are probably smart enough to hire him.

8
3

What hiring Tubby means

If we hire Tubby Smith doers that make TTU the last stop for aging coaches?



1st Bobby Knight
2nd Billy G
3rd Tubby Smith

1
4

Why not go after Ben Howland

Why not go after Ben Howland formerly at UCLA?

5
4

Hance, BOR, Athletic Dept

Just sad. Track record. KK, thank God they didn't screw that up and hire another 60-year-old ready to quit ...

Should be working on the replacement of Curry-Curry -- but too busy screwing up another hire in men's basketball.

Now we got an unachieving baseball team again who can hit the ball out of the infield or advance a runner on third with no outs.

6
5

Don't do this

Kirby , Don't do this. Don't hire another washed up has been. This is nothing more than Tuberville all over. Don't pluck this guy off the unemployment line . You've got the guy for the job right here. right now . Give Walker the job.

7
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BOR and Hance

Would we expect anything less from a bunch of fat cats appointed by Rick perry and a career politician? These guys are so out of touch with reality; they are used to buying everything they think you can do the same with athletics. All they are looking for is instant gratification. Hire walker and let him build a program!

6
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Don't need a 61 year old

Don't need a 61 year old coach who was fired by Minnesota- hire a young coach ( think KK for basketball).

Didn't they learn their lesson with last Tubby... he's looking for a final payday before he retires.

No to Tubby!

2
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I thought Mr. Kingsbury was

I thought Mr. Kingsbury was recently hired as head coach.

4
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Yes to Tubby

Any Lubbock County High School coach could have gone 2-11 in the Big 12 this year. Unacceptable. Big 12 coaches are nervous this morning ...very, very nervous.

9
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Just say no to Tubby

When will Tech start going through the whole pile of apples and start looking for the best one instead of reaching for the one that just fell of the truck?

This is pitiful squared and has all the ear markings of Kent "Big Head" Hance being involved.

If this is their plan, I would hope that Tech fans, students and alums will not support this and will stay away in droves.

The best way to get their attention is with our money.

Just curious, but do you think they called that guy at Florida Gulf Coast? What about the guy at Wichita State who is taking his team to the Final Four?

Of course not.

Those of you that have read my posts here in the past know how I feel. I'm tired of the mediocrity we're forced to endure.

Again, the ONLY school in the Big 12 that hasn't been to a BCS game, the Final Four or the College Baseball World Series is Texas Tech.

It's time to raise our expectations and fix that now.

6
2

No more Tub, Tubs, Tubbs, Tuber, Tubby, etc.

Football - Avg age of coaches 36. Smith, 61. Something makes absolutely no sense here.

One might think the evil kh@nceollor is trying to shove this down our throats, just to remind us of his dark powers.

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@dpuck817

Tech is also the only school that has Kent (failed republican lobbyist and politician) Hance as chancellor. Until that changes, nothing else will change for the better.

7
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If I were Walker

I would run, not walk, to any coaching position I could find. It's apparent the Hocutt either can't/won't hire him. If he doesn't, Walker has no dignity left when he is not hired over a 61-year-old retread with no recruiting experience, no ties in West Texas. We've seen how well that worked out!

Walker took over a very disgruntled, discouraged team after a disastrous year with Billy Bob, and he deserves much more respect from TTU's powers that be, whoever they are in this mess. Hance, BOR, Hocutt - who is pulling the strings in this marionette show?

Yes Chris, leave while you can before "they" can flaunt another oldie in your face! You've been used too long as their puppet, and you deserve better than this for laying your career on the line to save a broken basketball program!

6
1

Tubby

is a class act and a pretty decent coach. Unfortunately he won a NC with Rick Pitino's recruits the first year he was at Kentucky. He never was able to do it twice at the hottest BB program in the country. Everyone knows that recruiting is the name of the game when it comes to winning basketball at this level. If he had a difficult time recruiting at Kentucky and Minnesota, how is he going to recruit out in west Texas? As someone that thought that hiring Bobby Knight was the right hire at the time, I think hiring Tubby right now would be a hugh mistake even though he has had some success throughout his career. At this point , I don't think the fans are on board with this hire and unless he can produce instant results it is hard to see how he could possibly win their support. I am in the Coach Walker camp. He is younger, more enthusiastic, already seems to be a better recruiter and he wants to be in west Texas. I'm not willing to blame Hance or the BOR if Kirby hires Smith just like I don't give them any credit for hiring KK. This one for better or worse is on Mr Hocutt.

6
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Probably not

I have nothing against Smith as a coach. But I do not think this would be a good hire, mainly because of his age. Remember the stated rationale for giving coaches long contracts is to assure potential recruits that the guy recruiting them will be around for a while. That would be a matter of doubt with Smith regardless of his contract. Also, I fear this fits into the recent pattern of hiring people at or near retirement into important jobs where they collect big check but just coast and phone in their jobs, as in Tuberville and the present provost. Even if Smith does not follow the pattern, he would be retiring fairly soon, leaving TTU once again in search of a coach.

5
1

NO MORE TUBS

Do not hire a 61 year old retread that hasn't won with his own recruits in more than 10 years. Coach Walker did everything he was asked to do and he can recruit! The players love him!! DO THE RIGHT THING. HIRE WALKER!!!!!

1
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still waiting...

To hear just exactly what Walker accomplished to earn the job as Head Coach....

6
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Statistical Fact

Walker increased conference wins by 100%....

1
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First Class Coach and Man

Coach at UK for 10 years. 10 consecutive appearances in the NCAA tournament. Undefeated season in the SEC. He and Donna will be great citizens in the Lubbock community. You will be fortunate to have him as your next head coach.

2
0

Kentucky years are meaningless !!!

Champs/undefeated all done with the previous coaches players.

No bluegrass on campus. No legendary program here.

Long time ago, and was fired for that great work.

46-62, no finish better than sixth is what we're getting.

Already have great citizen, babysitter, den-mother, x's & o's. 46-70 with ZERO ncaa wins to go with it.

Already had past-his-prime old man who can't relate/recruit current generation, and could only win with previous coaches players.

Look where we are now !! Why should we waste 4-5 years to be in the same spot ??

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