Murray St., Prohm agree to extension
Roundup: UAB hires UNC's Haase; Rivers, Sidney to enter draft
Murray State and Steve Prohm agreed to a one-year contract extension and a pay raise on Monday after the Racers completed the most successful season in their school’s history.
“It feels great,” Prohm said in a text message to The Associated Press. “Ready to get back to work after the Final [Four].”
Murray State says that Prohm’s base salary will be increased from $195,000 to $270,000 and his radio and TV contracts push his total compensation to $300,000, not including incentives. The new deal runs through the 2015-16 season.
“”It’s extraordinary to say, considering we have such a tradition rich program, but there were a number of `firsts’ for Murray State basketball this season under Coach Prohm’s leadership,” Racers Athletic Director Allen Ward said in a statement. “And this contract with Steve is also a `first’ for our program.”
Ward said the school will use the boost in ticket sales from the season and the revenue from the NCAA tournament victory
Prohm took over this year after spending five years in Murray as an assistant coach under Billy Kennedy.
The Racers started 23-0 as the last undefeated team in Division I, rising as high as ninth in the polls. After beating Colorado State in the NCAA tournament, Murray State fell to Marquette to finish the season 31-2.
“I’m very proud of what our players have been able to accomplish on and off the court this season. The way they represented Murray State was first class,” Prohm said. “Without them and my tremendous staff and support staff, none of this would have been possible.”
Murray State was the only Division I team to go undefeated on the road this season after winning the Ohio Valley Conference regular season and tournament title. Prohm’s name came up for other vacancies, but he maintained from the start that he would be back in Murray for his second season.
Prohm and Ward met multiple times last week, and Ward said they finalized the deal on Monday morning after negotiating for five or six hours over the course of the previous week.
“It was a long week, but I never felt like there were any hang ups or hold ups in it,” Ward told the AP. “I feel really good, I’m glad he’s staying. I feel like we have a chance to build on what we did this year.”
UAB hires North Carolina assistant Jerod Haase as head coach
UAB has hired North Carolina assistant Jerod Haase as head basketball coach.The Blazers announced the hiring Monday night to replace Mike Davis, who was fired after making the NCAA tournament once in six seasons. Haase will be introduced Tuesday.
The top-seeded Tar Heels were knocked out of the NCAA tournament by Kansas on Sunday.
Haase, who turns 38 on April 1, worked under Williams for 13 seasons at North Carolina and Kansas, where he starred as a player. He was head coach of North Carolina’s junior varsity team the past five seasons.
Haase helped the Tar Heels win national championships in 2005 and 2009. And once again the Blazers have tapped a head coach from one of college basketball’s marquee programs. Davis was head coach at Indiana.
Mississippi State’s Renardo Sidney to turn pro
Mississippi State forward Renardo Sidney has signed with an agent and will declare for the NBA draft.
The 6-foot-10 junior from Jackson, Miss., averaged 11.5 points and 6.1 rebounds per game over two seasons with the Bulldogs. He battled eligibility problems early in his career, and occasionally had discipline issues, including a highly-publicized fight with a teammate in the stands during a tournament in Hawaii.
In a statement from the school, Sidney says he appreciates “Mississippi State giving me an opportunity to play,” but wants to follow his “dream of playing in the NBA.”
Sidney averaged 14.2 points and 7.6 points during his sophomore season, but his production dipped as a junior. He averaged 9.7 points and 5.2 rebounds per game last year, helping the Bulldogs to a 21-12 record.
Duke’s Austin Rivers enters NBA draft early, hiring agent
Austin Rivers is leaving Duke after one season for the NBA draft.
The freshman guard announced his decision and plans to hire an agent on Monday after team officials said he spent the weekend discussing his future plans with his family at their home outside Orlando, Fla.
“Duke has prepared me for the challenges that are ahead both on and off the court,” Rivers said in a statement issued by the school. “I have learned so much from the coaching staff and my teammates that will help me succeed at the next level.”
The son of Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers averaged a team-leading 15.5 points and was a unanimous selection as the Atlantic Coast Conference’s rookie of the year. He’s just the third Duke freshman to lead the team in scoring after Johnny Dawkins in 1983 and Bill Sapp in 1945.
“Austin had a terrific year as a freshman and has put himself in a position to pursue his dream of being a great player in the NBA,” Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said, adding that he supports the decision. “We look forward to watching him continue to develop and excel at the next level.”
The top highlight of Rivers’ only college season was a buzzer-beating 3-pointer that gave Duke an 85-84 victory at North Carolina. He scored a season-high 29 points in that game.
He’s the fourth player to leave Duke after one season and the second one-and-done guard in two years after Cleveland made Kyrie Irving the No. 1 overall pick of last year’s draft. The others are Corey Maggette in 1999 and Luol Deng in 2004.
Doc Rivers, speaking to reporters in Charlotte before the Celtics’ game against the Bobcats on Monday night -- before his son’s decision was made public -- said he thought his choice would be a good one no matter what he decided to do.
“Listen, going to the NBA if you’re going to get drafted in the first round, that’s good,” Doc Rivers said. “Going back to Duke, that’s good. So I don’t know if you have a bad choice.”