Updates from Monday, April 28
Missouri has hired Kim Anderson as its next basketball coach, the program confirmed in a release:
The University of Missouri announced on Monday that former University of Central Missouri head coach Kim Anderson, 58, a two-time graduate of Mizzou ('79 and '81) and the 2014 NABC National Coach of the Year, has agreed to become the 18th men's basketball coach in school history.
The move by Director of Athletics Mike Alden signaled a return to Missouri's proud history and helps the program welcome back a "True Son" (Sedalia, Mo.) who is coming off a 30-5 record with the Mules and the 2014 NCAA Division II National Championship. Anderson's national title run at UCM becomes even more impressive considering the program welcomed in 10 new players last season and had just one returning student-athlete averaging more than 4.7 points per game.
"We are pleased and excited to have Kim Anderson leading our program," Alden said. "He's a man of great character, integrity and respect. He has demonstrated the ability to mentor young men on and off the court, academically and socially. He's a proven winner on all levels, and he's built tremendous relationships around the country in the basketball community, which assists greatly with recruiting and other important aspects for a program. Lastly, the fact that he's a Missouri Tiger at heart is important, he is committed to Mizzou and has a passion to build a program of which all Tiger fans will be proud."
Updates from Thursday, April 24
ESPN's Jeff Goodman reports on the latest with Tim Floyd and the head coaching position at Missouri: "UTEP's Tim Floyd had emerged as a strong candidate for the Missouri opening, but is no longer being considered for the job, a source close to the situation told ESPN."
Updates from Wednesday, April 23
Felix Chavez of elpasotimes.com has the latest news on Tim Floyd's interest in Missouri:
UTEP men's basketball coach Tim Floyd told Times reporter Bill Knight there is no truth to Missouri rumors.— Felix Chavez (@Fchavezeptimes) April 23, 2014
Updates from Tuesday, April 22
ESPN's Jeff Goodman provides another candidate for the Missouri opening:
UTEP coach Tim Floyd has emerged as a strong candidate at Missouri, a source told ESPN.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) April 23, 2014
Updates from Monday, April 21
Andy Katz of ESPN has the latest on Missouri's coaching search:
Central Missouri coach and Missouri alumnus Kim Anderson is a strong candidate for the vacant Missouri opening, according to a source with direct knowledge.
Anderson is being termed one of a few finalists for the opening, which occurred last week when Frank Haith left for Tulsa after three seasons.
Gabe DeArmond of PowerMizzou.com had more on Gregg Marshall and the vacancy:
As soon as Missouri's head coaching job came open, speculation began to center around Wichita State's Gregg Marshall. But three days later, Marshall's agent says he has not heard from Missouri.
"We have not had any contact," Myles Solomon told PowerMizzou.com.
Updates from Friday, April 18
Dave Matter of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch provides a synopsis of Missouri Director of Athletics Mike Alden discussing the state of the Tigers' program:
Alden got call from Haith yesterday. haith texted alden this morning to say he accepted job at Tulsa— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) April 18, 2014
Tim Fuller is Mizzou's interim head coach during transition.— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) April 18, 2014
Alden: The next time I talk to you after today will be when we introduce the next head coach.— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) April 18, 2014
Alden asked about Kim Anderson: I'm not going to discuss the candidates. ... Kim has done a magnificent job at Central Missouri State.— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) April 18, 2014
Alden asked if Missouri in position to hire a high-profile $$ coach. "We're very pleased with the growth of our budget."— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) April 18, 2014
Alden says foundation for Mizzou program is stronger now than when Haith was hired.— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) April 18, 2014
Coming off a relatively disappointing 23-12 season, a sixth-place finish in the shaky SEC and an absence from the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2008, the Missouri Tigers were in need of some kind of change.
Fortunately, Frank Haith gave them one.
Three years after replacing Mike Anderson, the 48-year-old head coach was hired by Tulsa to fill the void left by Danny Manning on Thursday afternoon, which ESPN's Jeff Goodman confirmed:
Missouri's Frank Haith has agreed to be the coach at Tulsa, source told ESPN. Story: http://t.co/PcZZ8qv2dX— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) April 17, 2014
The Tigers may miss the former AP and Big 12 Coach of the Year, but the early rumored candidates should have them feeling extremely optimistic.
Goodman listed out some potential targets:
Missouri targets: Mike White, Archie Miller, Craig Neal. My gut says that Miller won't have interest -- as was case with Marquette.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) April 17, 2014
Missouri may also make a run at Nebraska's Tim Miles, source told ESPN.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) April 17, 2014
Among head coaches who are realistically available, those are among the cream of the crop nationally.
Archie Miller is arguably the brightest young coaching star in America who isn't named Shaka. The former Ohio State and Arizona assistant, in just his third year at Dayton, led the Flyers on an improbable run to the Elite Eight in March.
At just 35 years old, he'll have no problem on the recruiting circuit, and after beating Jim Boeheim with just just one day of preparation in the Big Dance, he proved to be an intelligent basketball mind.
But while Miller is No. 1 on the list, he turned down the Marquette job, as Goodman noted, and signed a contract extension shortly after his team's Cinderella run, making the following statement, via the school's website:
It's a privilege to be the Head Coach at the University of Dayton. We are thrilled about our future. The University of Dayton has everything it needs to be among the best. We have great fans, a totally committed administration, and the key pieces are in place. My family and I appreciate what basketball means to the University of Dayton and the entire city. We're honored to be a part of it.
Next on the list would probably be Tim Miles, who has now orchestrated complete 180s at both Colorado State and Nebraska, taking both programs to the NCAA tournament.
Craig Neal has just one year of collegiate head coaching experience, but New Mexico didn't skip a beat—in fact arguably got better—with the 50-year-old taking over for Steve Alford last season.
Louisiana Tech's Michael White has a silly .705 winning percentage in three seasons with the Bulldogs, but he is likely a bit of a long shot. Goodman adds another candidate in that department:
Complete dark horse name for Missouri: Central Missouri coach Kim Anderson.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) April 17, 2014
Kim Anderson, fresh off a Division II national title with Central Missouri, has strong ties to the area. He was born in Sedalia, Mo., played for the Tigers and has served two separate stints as an assistant in Columbia.
It's an outside-the-box idea, but perhaps it's one that Missouri needs right now. Mizzou grad and ESPN's Tom Hart is certainly on board:
I hope Kim Anderson comes home to #Mizzou.— Tom Hart (@tom_hart) April 17, 2014
Who should be Missouri's top target?
This is just the beginning of the list for Missouri, which is likely to add several candidates as the search inevitably heats up in the coming days, but it's already quite enticing.
There is a compelling blend of burgeoning (Miller) and established (Miles) leaders, and if the Tigers continue to go after these kind of names, it's clear they will soon get the shot of energy this program needs.