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Update: Masiello will NOT be the next USF Head Coach

Photo: AP

Photo: AP

The following is from The Tampa Tribune. Apparently the “done deal” of Steve Masiello to South Florida has fallen through and won’t happen.

TAMPA — The University of South Florida’s search for a new men’s basketball coach hit a major snag late Tuesday night when USF learned that the man it was set to hire, Manhattan College coach Steve Masiello, had a previously undetected discrepancy in his background check, a source close to the coaching search told The Tampa Tribune.

USF was forced to kill the deal with Masiello.

That background-check information was discovered by Eastman & Beaudine, a Texas-based search firm that was paid $60,000 by USF to find candidates to replace Stan Heath, who was fired on March 14.

Masiello, 36, had agreed to a five-year contract with USF and signed the deal, believed to be worth more than $1 million per season, leaving only final details to be worked out.

The search is back on, and USF must turn to other candidates. Possibilities include University of Florida assistant coach John Pelphrey or Louisiana Tech head coach Mike White, whose team faces Florida State tonight for a spot in the National Invitation Tournament final four in New York.

Click here to read the rest of the article. 

Steve Masiello Taking the USF Job

Photo: AP

Photo: AP

ESPN’s Jeff Goodman is reporting that it is a done deal that Steve Masiello will be taking the South Florida head coaching job, leaving Manhattan after 3 seasons where he went 60-39 in that time.

Some people see this as a lateral move, some see it as a step up. I think it is a great opportunity for him to turn that program around and turn that into an offer to get somewhere better. Remember that Richard Pitino was at FIU for just one season before the Minnesota job came open.

So I definitely don’t see this as a destination job for Masiello, but you have other things to factor in. When they aren’t in the office or on the basketball court, coaches have to live their lives too. Steve Masiello, a 36 year old single guy, will now be living his life in Tampa, Florida while probably making over a million dollars per year. Good for him.

Good luck to Masiello at USF. He certainly showed me that he is one of the best young coaches in the country and I hope he succeeds there.

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55 (Episode 19)

55-9

This week…..on 55…..

As we come down to the last few episodes of 55, it’s only fitting that the end of the basketball season is near too. I just wish there was something to talk about. Oh yeah…we get uk again! So in the spirit of revenge on those we despise more than Digger Phelps (I may have went too far) here are the 55 most ridiculous things I have heard, had to debate, or just thought about this past week. This …..is….55.

1) On Thursday night we opened up our defense of the National Championship with a tough game vs the Manhattan Jaspers, coached by former Louisville asst coach Steve Masiello. I like to believe we played the basketball version of a game called chess. Rick didn’t want to embarrass Mass so we played tit-for-tat (lol) and won the game when we needed to. Played smothering defense as well.

 

2) smother

3) Well that had the opposite effect than I intended

4) Nevertheless, we move onto our next conquest which are the mighty Billikens of Saint Louis. Top 10 team at times this year, former conference foes…what could scare us about the Billikens?

5) billiken

6) Oh yeah..That was creepy….in more ways then one

7) I digress

 

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Initial Thoughts: Louisville beats Manhattan 71-64

Chris O'Meara / Associated Press

Chris O’Meara / Associated Press

Everyone take a deep breath. The Cards survived and advanced. We will be playing on Saturday for a chance to go to the Sweet 16. This game will be put behind us and it won’t matter. Here are my initial thoughts just a few minutes after the buzzer…

*I thought Wayne Blackshear played a GREAT second half. While everyone else was struggling, he kept hustling and getting offensive rebounds and put backs. He kept us hanging around until the other guys took over at the end.

*Luuuuuuuuuuke! What can you say? The Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four last year showed up in the clutch and hit two huge threes. Louisville shot 4-13 from three point land, and those two along with Russ’ near the end make up 3 of them.

*Luke also had that big steal on the inbounds play and got fouled to go to the free throw line. I thought all game while people were playing out of control, Luke remained calm and still played his game.

*The body language for about 39 minutes was terrible. We hadn’t seen that from this team in quite some time. Montrezl yelled at Russ. Luke ran back in transition and was the only one back and when Manhattan scored, he looked back as if to say “Anyone else want to play defense with me?” After any foul call against us, our guys looked disgusted and would complain and it just didn’t look like the team that finished the season on such a high note.

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Masiello: “They’re Basically the Bigger, Better Version of us”

Steve Masiello

Photo: thebiglead.com

ESPN.com’s Kieran Darcy published an article on Sunday night about the reaction that Manhattan head coach Steve Masiello had when the bracket popped up on the screen showing that their first round game would be against the Louisville Cardinals and his mentor, Rick Pitino. Needless to say, Masiello was not thrilled.

Just check out this opening of the article…

Steve Masiello didn’t raise his arms. He didn’t pump his fists. He didn’t jump out of his chair when he saw his team’s name pop up on the TV screen Sunday night — what should have been one of the best moments of his life. 

No, Steve Masiello closed his eyes. 

And when he opened them after a moment, he looked as though he’d just been punched in the gut. Because he had. 

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This Thursday could have been Russ Smith vs Louisville (his former team)

Photo: grantland.com

Photo: grantland.com

I think we are all finished believing the notion that the selection committee doesn’t look for story-lines when making the brackets. I haven’t even looked at a bracket yet, other than when they show up on TV, because for some reason I usually wait until I fill mine out on Tuesday or Wednesday to even look at them. This could be why I never do well. Anyways, even without looking, I do know that Dayton plays Ohio State, so that is a story right there.

For Louisville, there are plenty of story-lines just in their region. In the first game you have Pitino vs Masiello. Then there is a potential Sweet 16 match-up against Kentucky or Wichita State. Remember who the last team was that beat Wichita? On the bottom half of the bracket there are potential match-ups with Duke or Michigan. So Pitino vs Coach K in a rematch of last year’s Regional Final and of course Michigan would be a rematch of the National Championship.

This post is about the story-line that almost was, and thankfully never happened. Take yourself back 3 years ago. Louisville entered the NCAA Tournament and before you know it, Morehead State hit a buzzer beater and Louisville was out of the NCAA Tournament. As is usually the case in the offseason, a Pitino assistant coach got a head coaching job as Steve Masiello was named head coach at Manhattan. The thing that some people may forget is, he almost took a couple Cardinals with him. One was George Goode. The other? Russ Smith.

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CSZ notebook: Sunday evening

csz

By Justin Renck:

Football

*Charlie Strong picked up 2 committments today for the class of 2013. Richard Benjamin, a WR/DB that will likely play cornerback for the Cards, has offers from nearly every major program in the country. Read our earlier post here. Benjamin actually committed to the Cards a few days ago, but since he was making his official visit this weekend, the coaches wanted to wait until then for it to become official, and now it is.

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