It's one and done at FIU for head basketball coach Richard Pitino. According to ESPN, Pitino has been hired to fill the vacancy at the University of Minnesota after just one season as the Golden Panthers' top dog.
Pitino, the son of legendary Louisville coach Rick Pitino, was hired last year to replace Isiah Thomas. In his first year he racked up an 18-14 record, the team's first winning record in 13 years. The team even made it to the Sun Belt finals, but ultimately missed out on their chance at an automatic NCAA birth to Western Kentucky.
Apparently, though, that was enough to get bigger school to notice him, plus as USA Today notes, Minnesota Athletics Director Norwood Teague likes to hired young coaches on the rise. While serving in the same job at VCU he hired Shaka Smith out of obscurity to be the school's basketball coach. He ended up taking the team to the Final Four in 2011.
Minnesota had reportedly also had their eyes on FGCU coach Andy Enfield, but he was scooped up by USC yesterday.
Sadly, Pitino will not get to see those crazy court designs he liked so much come to fruition at FIU.
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.