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Who Will Be Jeff Capel’s Assistant Coaches?



Jeff Capel has been the head coach at Pitt for about a week and we’re still waiting on some big news.

Who will join him behind the bench as his assistant coaches?

These are very important hires so it’s not surprising he’s taking his time in making this decision.

Aside from their on court instruction, these assistants will have the critical job of helping Capel recruit high end talent. I would imagine that at least one of Capel’s hires will be someone that has a history of recruiting down South and in ACC territory.

As we reported on the day of his hiring, Capel was interested in bringing former Pitt player and assistant Brandin Knight back to Pittsburgh. At this point, we haven’t heard whether Knight has accepted Capel’s offer to return to Pitt.

January 6, 2015: Pittsburgh’s Assistant Coach Brandin Knight and Pittsburgh’s Head Coach Jamie Dixon. The University of Pittsburgh Panthers defeated the Boston College Eagles 61-60 (OT) in an ACC basketball matchup at Conte Forum in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. — Icon/Sportswire

Last night, PSN heard of a name that Capel might have approached and he’s someone with an impressive resume: Rod Barnes.

Barnes, 52, is currently head coach at Cal State Bakersfield. Prior to that, Barnes was head coach at Georgia State and Ole Miss.

Barnes led Cal State Bakersfield to an NCAA Tournament in 2016 and won the WAC regular season tournament in 2017 and won the Hugh Durham Award for minority Coach of the Year. He was also awarded the WAC Coach of the Year in 2016 and 2017.

The native of Mississippi’s most impressive item on his resume was as head coach at Ole Miss where he coached from 1998-2006. Barnes was named the Naismith College Coach of the Year in 2001.

One other interesting thing about Barnes was that he was part of Capel’s first coaching staff at Oklahoma in 2006. After his first year, he was hired as head coach at Georgia State.

As we await to see if anything develops with the name Rod Barnes, if we learned anything with the search that led to the hiring of Capel, it’s to stay patient.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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