Augusta State's search for a new men's basketball coach takes full effect this week.
The school will hold interviews Monday through Thursday - one a day - for each of the four candidates for the position vacated by seven-year coach Gary Tuell. The candidates will go through a screening process, where each man will visit on campus with Augusta State faculty and staff, including president William A. Bloodworth Jr., one community person and one player.
Athletic director Clint Bryant said a decision is expected to be reached within the next 10 days.
"There are a lot of people qualified to coach college basketball," Bryant said. "I'm basically looking for a fit. You don't find that out till they come to campus and visit."
Bryant and his screening committee will look at four candidates: Jaguars assistant Buck Harris, former Aiken Tech head coach Charles Welch, Belmont Abbey head coach Dip Metress and former Campbell coach Billy Lee.
"It's Buck's time," said Tuell, who left Friday to become the head coach at Nova Southeastern. "One of the reasons I feel comfortable about leaving is Buck's ready to be the head coach."
Metress, whose wife, Heather, hails from Lincolnton, Ga., kept his Augusta ties by playing Paine College the past few seasons. In Belmont Abbey's last appearance against Augusta State, Metress and Tuell got into a heated exchange after a late foul in a Jaguar win in December 2002.
Reach Chris Gay at (706) 823-3645 or firstname.lastname@example.org.