Iona Hoops Hires Successful D-II Coach Tim Cluess To Replace Kevin Willard

Jesse KramerCorrespondent IApril 7, 2010

This is the third edition of the coaching changes that have taken place so far in the 2010 college basketball offseason. Get up to date by checking out the last edition.

Iona brings in Tim Cluess (C.W. Post) as next head coach

Iona was disappointed to see Fran Fraschilla walk away from the job. Louisville assistant Steve Massielo became the new front runner candidate for the coaching position. However, Iona went in a different direction. The Gaels will announce C.W. Post head coach Tim Cluess as their new head coach on Thursday.

Iona had success by taking a Rick Pitino assistant last time in Kevin Willard. Willard quickly rebuilt the struggling program, but then bolted for Seton Hall. It was definitely surprising that Iona did not go back to Pitino's staff.

However, it could be a good move that Iona chose Cluess. He has had loads of success in New York as a coach of St. Mary's High School in Manhasset and C.W. Post University. 

Cluess immediately rebuilt C.W. Post, who had only four winning seasons in the nine seasons before he arrived. Cluess brought the Pioneers back to the top of D-II basketball and had a winning season (19-11) in his first year.

In 2007-08, Cluess had 26-5 record and a 30-1 record in 2008-09. In 2009, the Pioneers went to the Elite Eight, where they picked up their only loss of the season.

This past season, Cluess went 23-6 but could not take C.W. Post to the tournament. 

Cluess has a lot of experience in New York and has had success wherever he goes. He should fit well in the Iona program.


Siena will promote Mitch Buonaguro (Siena assistant)

Siena will soon announce that assistant coach Mitch Buonaguro will replace Fran McCaffery as the head coach of Siena. Buonaguro has spent five years as an assistant at Siena. This will be his third head coaching job. 

Buonaguro was the head coach of Boston College from 1975-1977. He was then an assistant at Villanova. After that, he took a head coaching job at Fairfield. After six seasons with Fairfield, Buonaguro hopped around as an assistant coach. He coached with Texas A&M, Cleveland State, UNC-Greensboro, and then Siena.


Sam Houston State will promote Jason Hooten (Sam Houston State Assistant)

After Bob Marlin bolted for a job at Louisiana-Lafayette, the Sam Houston State job was open. Jason Hooten beat out a couple of other assistants to take the head coaching position. Hooten has been with Sam Houston State since 2004. 


Ed Conroy (Citadel) to Tulane

Tulane hired Ed Conroy mainly due to him being able to turn Citadel around very quickly. Conroy took the struggling Citadel squad to the CBI in 2009, and then finished 16-16 in 2009-10. Conroy won the Southern Conference Coach of the Year Award in 2009. 

Conroy was Tulane's second choice after Robert Morris head coach Mike Rice turned down the offer.


Steve Donahue (Cornell) to Boston College

It was almost official in the last edition, and now it is. Steve Donahue will coach Boston College in 2010-11. 

Donahue spent 10 seasons with Cornell and brought the Big Red to the NCAA Tournament in three straight years. Cornell lost in the first round in 2008 and 2009, but made a run to the Sweet 16 in 2010. 

Donahue was adored at Cornell and everybody from that program is rooting for him to do well at Boston College. 


Brian Nash resigns from St. Francis (NY)

Brian Nash resigned from St. Francis after five seasons. Nash went 47-97 in five seasons with the Terriers. He finished 11-18 (8-10 NEC) in 2009-10. 

Nash left due to personal reasons and had an easy break-up with the program. St. Franics athletic director Irma Garcia thanked Nash for his time with the program. 

No news has been released saying if Nash plans to look for a new coaching job. 


Fred Hill in trouble at Rutgers

Fred Hill has not yet been fired, but it would not be surprising if he will be fired in the near future. In addition to Hill's extreme struggles to win, he got into trouble at a Rutgers baseball game. Hill yelled out expletives to the Pittsburgh bench during a baseball game.

Also, Rutgers stars Gregory Echenique and Mike Rosario are transferring. 


Dino Gaudio fired from Wake Forest

Wake Forest made the tough decision of firing Dino Gaudio, who spent three years with the Demon Deacons. Gaudio had some success at Wake Forest, but falters late in the season and NCAA Tournament woes led to him being fired. 

No list of candidates has been revealed.


Holy Cross fires Sean Kearney

Holy Cross hired Sean Kearney for the 2009-10 season, but showed its high expectations by quickly firing him after he went 9-22 in his first season, setting a school record for losses. 

There have been unconfirmed reports that Ralph Willard (Louisville assistant), Richard Pitino (Florida assistant), and Norm Roberts (former St. John's coach) are candidates for the coaching job. 


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