UTEP head basketball coach Tim Floyd has retired, and the former NBA head coach made that announcement right after the Miners (now 1-5) lost 66-52 to Lamar on Monday night.
Floyd, 63, told the media, “This is the right time. I know this is the right time.”
Here’s video of Floyd’s press conference, via The El Paso Times:
Floyd has been UTEP’s head coach since 2010, and put together a 138-98 record with the progam, but failed to ever make the NCAA Tournament.
The well-traveled coach is better known for being the head coach for brutal Chicago Bulls teams in 1998-2001 after Michael Jordan retired (for the second time), being the head coach of the New Orleans Hornets for a season in 2003-2004, and being the head coach of the USC Trojans from 2005-2009. He was also the head coach at Iowa State from 1994-1998.
The news comes on the same day UTEP introduced Jim Senter as the new athletic director. And during Floyd’s press conference, he said that he thinks Senter and school president Diana Natalicio should try to get UTEP “where it belongs in the Mountain West Conference.”
“The travel is shorter. The opponents and the teams you would be playing against would be in line with what the history of this school is. I would think [MWC president] Craig Thompson and his infinite wisdom would understand that this [EL Paso] is the largest city in the country without a professional football, basketball, baseball, or hockey team. And that he needs us in terms of his basketball RPIs and to get multiple teams in the NCAA Tournament.”
Very interesting comments to make during a press conference announcing retirement.
UTEP is currently in the Conference USA, and in addition to the basketball team’s struggles, the football team went 0-12 this year against bad competition. Floyd certainly makes a good point about El Paso and geographically UTEP would make sense for the Mountain West, but the school’s current performance in football and basketball would likely hurt their case.