Who Could Replace Shaka Smart At Texas?

Shaka Smart has left Texas for Marquette, perhaps running out the door before he could get fired. Either way, the move left Texas without a coach.

Texas isn’t as traditionally powerful as Indiana (or at least as Indiana once was), so many of the top candidates have their eye on the Hoosiers’ vacancy. But the Longhorns’ job undoubtedly will be coveted, too.

So, who may be the next man in line?

It’s hard to tell, but there certainly is no shortage of candidates. Let’s take a look:

Dana Altman: The Oregon coach has already been linked to the job, and he has proven to be a good one with the Ducks. He has won four Pac-12 titles at Oregon, advanced to the Final Four in 2017, and has made the Elite Eight on two occasions.

Chris Beard: Yes, he is currently the coach at Texas Tech. Yes, he has also been linked to the Indiana job. But also yes, he tends to move around — as the Red Raiders are his fourth team in nine years. So don’t be surprised if Texas pursues him.

Royal Ivey: The former Texas star is currently an assistant with the Brooklyn Nets. He played in the NBA and that undoubtedly helps in recruiting. His ties to and passion for the program would make him a natural fit.

Eric Musselman: Currently the coach at Arkansas, Musselman wins wherever he goes. Before joining the Razorbacks prior to last season, he led Nevada to the Sweet Sixteen. Another man linked to the Indiana gig.

Porter Moser: He’s turned Loyola-Chicago into Gonzaga Lite. Or more accurately, Loyola is a mid-major program that’s suddenly a regular threat in the NCAA tourney. Moser will get a big-time job if he wants it. Question is, will it be at Indiana, Oklahoma, Texas or someplace TBD.

Others to consider: Nate Oats, Alabama; Grant McCasland, North Texas; Paul Mills, Oral Roberts; Dennis Gates, Cleveland State; Brad Underwood, Illinois.

Written by Sam Amico

Sam Amico spent 15 years covering the NBA for Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports and NBA.com, along with a few other spots, and currently runs his own basketball website on the side, FortyEightMinutes.com.


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  1. The state of Texas is a hotbed for recruiting. Getting the right guy that can coach and recruit is the key. DFW, San Antonio and Houston alone can provide four to five great players a year. Look at all the Texas kids on rosters around the country. I cannot explain Shaka’s lack of success except to say he coached a completely different game at Texas than he did at VCU and did not have the same kind of success.

  2. Who cares. The Cows er Longhorns need to realize they are nothing more than above average in the revenue sports and that’s it. Their fans and boosters expect championships every season but it isn’t happening. Deal with it. Everything is bigger in Texas including the losses.

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