Army fired men’s coach Jim Crews after seven losing seasons. Firing basketball coaches after multiple losing seasons is nothing new, it is the nature of our profession. What doesn’t happen is doing it on September 23rd, 22 days before the start of practice.
Athletic Director Kevin Anderson said in a statement that Crew won’t be on the bench when the Black Knights start the 2009-10 season. Anderson told ESPN.com on Thursday that an incident in which Crews reportedly yelled at a cadet contributed to his dismissal. “Yelling” at an Army cadet… hmmm, people that eventually protect our freedom in a forward area face greater adversity than “yelling.” The behind the scenes information will eventually come out. It will be interesting to see where this one goes.
Crews brought the Knights to the Patriot League tournament semifinals the past three seasons but his best overall record was 15-16 in 2006-07. Army went 11-19 last season.
In seven years, Crews had a record of 60-139, a .302 winning percentage.
Anderson said a national search for Crews’ replacement will begin immediately. Army Deputy Athletic Director Gene Marshall will serve as interim coach. Gene Marshall is a former basketball coach.
The Black Knights, whose head coaches have included Mike Krzyzewski and Bobby Knight, have not had a winning season since 1984-85.
Crews came to West Point in March 2002 after 17 seasons at Evansville University in Indiana. His teams had 11 winning seasons, reached the NCAA tournament four times and the NIT twice. Crews was a reserve under Knight at Indiana University, including the 1976 team that went 32-0 and won the national championship.
A message by CBSSports.com left at a West Point phone number under the name James S. Crews was not immediately returned.