G.G. Smith was promoted to head basketball coach at Loyola (Md.) University on Friday following a six-year run as an assistant under Jimmy Patsos, who left earlier this month to take the top job at Siena.
Smith, 36, who played his college ball at Georgia, is the son of longtime college coach Tubby Smith. At his introductory news conference, Smith told the crowd that he had not yet shared the news with his father.
Smith’s wife, Lorie, then handed him a cellphone. Tubby Smith, who was watching the session on the internet, offered his congratulations from the other end of the line.
“It is a great day for the Smith family,” Tubby Smith said later. “I am really proud of G.G., not only as his mentor and father, but also as his former college coach, watching him grow and mature into the person he is today.”
G.G. Smith was a three-year starter at Georgia while playing for his father. Now he’s the 20th head coach in Loyola history.
He inherits a program that won 62 games over the past three seasons and reached the NCAA Tournament in 2012.
RUTGERS: Hall of Fame coach Bob Hurley, of St. Anthony High in Jersey City, N.J., would consider taking over the Scarlet Knights’ program on a caretaker basis for a year or two.
The 65-year-old Hurley told The Associated Press he would do take the job a short-term basis to stabilize the program that was rocked after a video was aired last week showing now fired coach Mike Rice kicking and grabbing players while uttering anti-gay slurs.
MISSISSIPPI: Coach Andy Kennedy has earned a raise and an extension to his contract after leading the Rebels to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2002.
The school said Friday that Kennedy’s contract has been extended through the 2017 season and will pay him a base salary of $1.8 million annually, which is a raise of $500,000 per year. The school also says the contract includes incentives for Southeastern Conference regular-season and NCAA postseason success and a 40 percent increase in the budget for his assistant coaches and support staff.
SAINT LOUIS: Removed the interim tag from Jim Crews’ job description after a record-setting season, naming him head coach.
Crews led the Billikens to a 28-7 record, the most victories in school history, as interim coach in place of Rick Majerus, who died in December. Saint Louis was the Atlantic 10 regular season and conference tournament champion and was a No. 4 seed in the Midwest Regional before losing to Oregon in the third round.
SOUTHERN CAL: Andy Enfield has hired two assistants to work with him as he takes over Southern California’s men’s basketball program.
Tony Bland joins the Trojans after spending the last two seasons as an assistant at San Diego State, where he helped his alma mater reach the NCAA tournament both years. He played basketball at Westchester High in Los Angeles, before starting his college playing career at Syracuse before transferring to San Diego State.
Jason Hart comes to USC from Pepperdine, where he was an assistant this season. Before that, he was head coach at Taft High in suburban Woodland Hills. Hart attended Inglewood and Westchester highs before playing at Syracuse, where he and Bland were teammates for two years. Hart played nine years in the NBA before retiring in 2010.