Danny Manning Won't Return as Wake Forest HC After 6 Seasons

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistApril 25, 2020

Wake Forest head coach Danny Manning watches his team play against North Carolina during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Chapel Hill, N.C., Tuesday, March 3, 2020. (AP Photo/Chris Seward)
Chris Seward/Associated Press

Wake Forest head basketball coach Danny Manning was fired after six seasons with the Demon Deacons.

Stadium's Jeff Goodman and CBS Sports' Gary Parrish both reported the news Saturday, and Wake Forest athletic director John Currie later announced the coaching change.

"After a comprehensive review of the men's basketball program, and with the support of president [Nathan] Hatch and university leadership, I have determined that it is time for a change in our head coaching position," he said.

The announcement included a statement from Manning about the decision:

"I am very thankful for having had the opportunity to lead the Wake Forest men's basketball program. I am very proud of the numerous student-athletes I had the pleasure of coaching, especially the student-athletes who earned their degrees. I am particularly thankful for all of the hard work my staff has put in through the years. I am so grateful to the Wake Forest community, who have made Winston-Salem a special home for my family and I from the second we stepped on campus in 2014. I wish the program nothing but success going forward."

Associate head coach Randolph Childress will take over the program on an interim basis.

Manning was a standout forward at the University of Kansas before getting selected with the first overall pick in the 1988 NBA draft by the Los Angeles Clippers.

After a 15-year playing career, he joined the Jayhawks' coaching staff in 2003. He became a head coach for the first time at Tulsa in 2012 and accepted the Wake Forest job in April 2014.

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"I first met Danny Manning in college, and our son played for him at Wake Forest. Our family has been beyond fortunate that our son has had Danny Manning as his coach, mentor and role model," ESPN's Jay Bilas wrote on Twitter. "Manning is one of the finest people I've known in this business. First class, always."

The Deacs struggled to find consistent success under the 53-year-old Mississippi native, though.

Wake Forest posted a 78-111 record during his tenure with five losing seasons in six years. It went 19-14 during the 2016-17 campaign to earn an NCAA tournament berth.

Manning previously led the Golden Hurricane to a 38-29 mark across two years at Tulsa with a Conference USA championship and NCAA tournament appearance in 2013-14.