ESPN’s Jeff Goodman reports that the Pacific Tigers have offered their head coaching position to Damon Stoudamire, and the former NBA point guard is expected to accept the job:
Pacific has offered the job to Damon Stoudamire, sources told ESPN. Likely to accept the job.
— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) March 16, 2016
CBS Sports’ Gary Parrish follows up on Goodman’s report, saying Stoudamire “will definitely accept”:
Stoudamire will definitely accept, I’m told, long as there are no last-minute issues. Should be official Wednesday. https://t.co/Yt3fzlN4um
— Gary Parrish (@GaryParrishCBS) March 16, 2016
Stoudamire, 42, is currently an assistant coach for the Memphis Tigers, where he’s been since 2015 (he was also an assistant there in 2011-13). He was also an assistant for his alma mater, the Arizona Wildcats, in 2013-15. And in 2009-2011, he served as an assistant for a team he had played with in the NBA, the Memphis Grizzlies.
Nicknamed “Mighty Mouse”, the 5’10” Stoudamire averaged 13.4 points over 14 seasons in the NBA with the Grizzlies (three seasons), Portland Trail Blazers (eight seasons), Toronto Raptors (three seasons), and San Antonio Spurs (one season).
Stoudamire was the seventh overall pick by the Raptors in the 1995 NBA Draft, and went on to win the NBA Rookie of the Year after averaging 19.0 points and 9.3 assists in the 1995-96 season.
Pacific went a disappointing 8-20 this season, and finished ninth of 10 teams in the West Coast Conference. As Goodman explains, Stoudamire would take over for Ron Verlin, who was suspended by the school in December:
Stoudamire would replace Ron Verlin, who was suspended by the school in December after an NCAA investigation into allegations of academic misconduct. Pacific announced earlier this month that Verlin would not return to the Tigers. Assistant coach Mike Burns was the interim head coach during Verlin’s suspension.
This job seems like a pretty good way for Stoudamire to get started as head coach. Pacific has been — or at least had been — a solid basketball program in recent years, making the NCAA Tournament four times since 2004, and most recently in 2013. If Stoudamire can get Pacific back to a tournament-level team soon, he will likely get plenty of interest from bigger programs.
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