” A new era of Pitt basketball begins” is how Pitt athletic director Scott Barnes opened up this afternoon’s press conference.
Barnes held a 5:30 PM press conference to officially announce that Jamie Dixon left to return to TCU. Barnes said that Dixon met with his players an hour before the press conference, then Barnes met with the players and also talked with the assistant coaches.
“The search for a new leader of our basketball program will begin earnestly today, we will work quickly and diligently to find our new leader”, said Barnes.
Barnes said that he has some names in mind that he’ll pursue aggressively.
“I believe that this job is viewed as a fantastic job by coaches around the country”, said Barnes. “The Pitt job is a national job, it’s an ACC job.”
The thing that caught my attention most about the press conference is when Barnes talked about characteristics he’d be looking for in a new coach. One of the things he mentioned is something that (in my opinion) Dixon has struggled with.
“I want a coach that is going to recruit his tail off……someone that has a high motor”, said Barnes.
He wouldn’t bite when asked about hiring a coach from a certain part of the country or anyone with ties to the school.
If Pitt fans could hire someone, a majority would go after former Pitt guard and current Arizona head coach Sean Miller but that’s not likely to happen.
What about another former Pitt guard Brandin Knight? In an interview with KDKA-TV’s Bob Pompeani, Dixon said that’s who he’s endorsing for the job.
“Yes, no question. He’s been with me about the entire time and yeah, I certainly think he’d ready and I certainly think the players think that too”, said Dixon. “I really think that Brandin Knight is ready.”