NEW YORK — Pitt head coach Jeff Capel said he has not received any assurance that he will return for a fifth season in charge of the Panthers’ men’s basketball team from athletic director Heather Lyke, but believes that he will.
Pitt finished Capel’s fourth season at 11-21 after Tuesday’s loss to Boston College, which is the worst record of Jeff Capel’s four-year tenure. When asked after the game, Capel said that he had not had a conversation with Lyke about his future with the program.
“I haven’t gotten any assurance,” Capel said after the game. “I haven’t gotten anything about being back, not being back, I haven’t had any sort of discussions with her.”
When asked whether or not he feels confident that he will be back, Capel offered a quick answer: “I do.”
Since accepting the job four years ago, Capel has won two games in the ACC Tournament. He has had two straight first-round exits, losing to Miami last year before Tuesday’s loss to Boston College, which capped the program’s worst season since going 0-19 in ACC play in Kevin Stallings’ final season in 2017-18. Despite the downturn in record, Capel believes that the program is in a better place now than when he inherited it.
“Hell yeah, from when I found it,” Capel said. “It was completely depleted when I got here. It was a mess. I didn’t know how bad it was. I don’t think the people inside the program knew how bad it was. I think where we are today, from the first day I took over, is significantly better. Now, is it improved the way I thought it would be after four years? No. Absolutely not. There is no one more frustrated than me with that, and I take responsibility for it, but it is certainly in a better place right now than it was when I first got here.”