Rick Pitino responds to rumors surrounding Maryland basketball job

Iona Gaels head coach Rick Pitino. (Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports)
Iona Gaels head coach Rick Pitino. (Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports) /

After rumors of interest from Maryland basketball emerged, Rick Pitino addressed the idea of leaving to take over as the Terrapins’ head coach.

Maryland basketball fans might have had mixed feelings about a report that the Terrapins were looking at Rick Pitino as the No. 1 choice to fill their head coaching position.

On one hand, Pitino is a proven winner who could take the program to new heights. On the other hand, he has a questionable history with scandals from his days at Lousiville.

Fans don’t have to wonder what Pitino felt about the rumors though. He made an unequivocal statement about them in less than 24 hours.

Rick Pitino shoots down Maryland basketball head coach rumors

“The University of Maryland is one of the premier institutions of higher learning. [Its] basketball program can be among the nation’s best. I hope they find the next great Gary Williams. I love coaching at Iona, and I’m totally committed to my players. It will not be me,” Pitino tweeted.

Pitino left no room for interpretation on that one. He won’t be the next head coach of Maryland basketball.

The Terrapins need a new head coach because of the departure of Mark Turgeon in December.

So who else could they look to? USC’s Andy Enfield has been linked to the job along with Providence’s Ed Cooley, St. Bonaventure’s Mark Schmidt, Seton Hall’s Kevin Willard and others.

Whoever gets the job will get a program with a strong history of NCAA Tournament bids and stability. They won a national title in 2002 and the program is primed to get back to that level with the right hire.

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