Men's Basketball: Knights close in on deal with Jordan
University officials met yesterday for the second time with Eddie Jordan to get a deal in place to make Jordan the school’s next head men’s basketball coach, according to The Newark Star-Ledger.
The University plans on announcing the hire in the coming days.
Jordan, now an assistant for the Los Angeles Lakers, met with Rutgers officials Saturday at an undisclosed meeting place in New Jersey.
If hired, Jordan will become the 18th head coach in program history and the fifth in the past 16 seasons.
One person familiar with the discussions said the deal could be announced as early as today — with a press conference to be scheduled later in the week.
The decision comes after Rhode Island head coach Dan Hurley withdrew his name form consideration Thursday — after being rumored to be Rutgers’ top target to replace former head coach Mike Rice. Rice was fired April 3, the day after ESPN revealed practice tapes of Rice throwing basketballs, cursing and shoving his players during his tenure.
Jordan has ties to Rutgers, as he scored 1,632 points in four seasons for the Scarlet Knights from 1973-1977. He was a member of the Rutgers team that made in to the Final Four in 1976.
Jordan played five seasons in the NBA with the Cleveland Cavaliers, New Jersey Nets, Portland Trail Blazers and the Los Angeles Lakers before moving on to coaching.
He has served as the head coach of the Sacramento Kings, Washington Wizards and Philadelphia 76ers.
He holds an overall record of 257-343 as an NBA head coach and served as an assistant in college with Rutgers, Old Dominion and Boston College. He was hired in 2012 to be an assistant with the Lakers.
Jordan’s most successful season as a head coach came in 2005 — when he led Washington to the Eastern Conference semifinals before the Wizards lost to the Miami Heat. He was fired from the Wizards in 2008 after they started 1-10 in their first 11 games.
The hire will come before Rutgers finds an athletic director — as the University is still searching for a replacement for Tim Pernetti, who stepped down April 5 amidst the fallout from the Mike Rice tapes. Carl Kirschner took over the position on an interim basis last week.