As coaching search expands, Pitt could consider these 5 candidates
Pitt’s coaching search is sharpening into focus, if for no other reason than two of the leading candidates dropped out of contention.
Arizona’s Sean Miller said no to the Panthers. His younger brother, Dayton coach Archie Miller, received a one-year contract extension Wednesday.
Pitt, which along with Stanford and St. Louis are the top Division I schools with open coaching positions, will continue sifting through applicants.
Three openings have been filled: Former Pitt coach Jamie Dixon filled TCU’s vacancy; former Stony Brook coach Steve Pikiell was hired at Rutgers; and former Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins took over at Central Florida.
If Pitt athletic director Scott Barnes doesn’t hire Dixon’s replacement this week, he could wait until next week’s Final Four. Coaches will gather in Houston for the annual National Association of Basketball Coaches convention.
Listed alphabetically, here are five possibilities who satisfy Barnes’ primary requirement of Division I head coaching experience.
Jeff Capel, Duke associate head coach
A former Blue Devils standout, Capel joined the Duke staff as an assistant coach in May 2011 after spending nine years as head coach at VCU and Oklahoma.
Capel is 175-110 with three NCAA Tournament appearances, including a trip to the Elite Eight in 2008 with Oklahoma.
If interested, Barnes won’t be able to interview Capel until the defending champions repeat or are eliminated from the NCAA Tournament. The Blue Devils face Oregon in the Sweet 16.
Bryce Drew, Valparaiso coach
The most decorated player in Valparaiso history, Drew replaced his father, Homer, in 2011. He has a 123-48 career record and has posted back-to-back 25-win seasons, with two NCAA Tournament appearances.
Drew, who led Valpo to three NCAA Tournament appearances as a player, is best known for the shot he hit in the first round of the 1998 NCAA Tournament to upset Mississippi.
Barnes won’t speak with Drew, who is being considered for the St. Louis vacancy, until the middle of next week at the earliest.
Valpo (29-6) faces BYU in the NIT semifinals in New York City.
Andy Enfield, Southern Cal coach
Enfield recently completed his third season at USC and produced the school’s first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2011.
Before coaching USC, Enfield established himself at Florida Gulf Coast, where as a No. 15 seed his team upset No. 2 seed Georgetown.
Enfield, a Shippensburg native, doesn’t have a winning record at USC. He’s 83-76 overall but has a reputation for quickly building (and rebuilding) programs.
Seth Greenberg, ESPN college basketball analyst
If you’re looking for a true longshot candidate, Greenberg is your man. A Pitt assistant under Roy Chipman from 1980-83, Greenberg had a 383-293 record at Virginia Tech, South Florida and Long Beach State, with six 20-win seasons and three NCAA Tournament appearances. Greenberg, 59, last coached in 2012.
Chris Mack, Xavier coach
Mack developed under his former coach, Sean Miller, and took over when Miller left for Arizona. He’s 162-77 in seven seasons, including a 28-6 record this year after a last-second loss to Wisconsin in the NCAA Tournament.
Mack has a quality that should appeal to Barnes: His teams advance to the postseason. Xavier has reached the NCAA Tournament in six of his seven seasons.