Shaka Smart of Texas has been hired as Marquette’s new head basketball coach, the Golden Eagles announced Friday.
Smart replaces Steve Wojciechowski, who was fired last week after seven seasons with the Golden Eagles.
“We conducted a comprehensive national search, during which we discussed our opening with a significant number of highly qualified coaches,” Marquette Athletic Director Bill School said in a statement. “Throughout the search, one individual continued to rise to the top and that was Shaka. I am beyond excited for our current and future student-athletes, who will be so fortunate to be mentored by Shaka. He is a great teacher of the world. game. In addition to being a great youth shaper. “
Smart said in a statement: “I am very excited to come to Milwaukee to begin building relationships and get down to business on the court!”
Among Texas’s top targets to replace Smart is expected to be Texas Tech coach Chris Beard, who went to Texas and was a Longhorns student assistant with Tom Penders. His purchase to go to another Big 12 school falls to $ 4 million on Thursday, sources told ESPN.
Smart, a Wisconsin native, had been the head coach of Texas for six seasons. The Longhorns have gone to three NCAA tournaments under Smart, but have yet to win an NCAA tournament game with him leading the way. They won the Big 12 tournament earlier this month, but were then upset by Abilene Christian in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Smart had been in trouble in Austin for two years, but the pandemic likely saved him after the 2019-20 season. His purchase after this season for Texas would have been around $ 7 million.
Before taking office at Texas, Smart was the VCU head coach, leading the Rams to five consecutive NCAA tournament appearances, including a Final Four run in 2011.