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Norm Roberts fired as St. John's head coach

As anticipated, Norm Roberts ends his tenure as St. John's head coach.

More on the change and what happens next to come. The school is indicating a desire to spend money, like DePaul has.

One hopes that in their evaluation process, they take a look at coaches who have proven that they can really manage a team and teach effective offense and defense; the recruiting of talent can be started by an effective NYC-connected assistant.

Right off the bat, my gut feeling is that St. John's won't get their first two targets. The competition for the best coaches will be keen, with guys like Mike Rice and Steve Donahue making ADs around the country think about mid-major coach instead of a major conference guy who hasn't had big success, such as Seth Greenberg. I foresee a coach like that being spun as a "proven winner", even though they have simply proven they can win just enough to miss the NCAA Tournament.

Perhaps recruiting to NYC will bring in more talent?


Davontay Grace (point guard, class of 2011) says he will open up his recruitment. Signee Ronald Roberts (forward, class of 2010) has signed a letter of intent, but seems unsure of what to do now that Norm Roberts is gone. Hopefully he gives the school a chance.

Take a look at related coaching posts:

- 2010 College Basketball Hot Seat: Evaluate Your Up and Comers

- some notes on Roberts' tenure and the possible coaching search at Norm Roberts Out as St. John’s Head Coach?

A look at Coach Norm Roberts’ Profile at St. John’s from two years ago that holds true today.


Red Storm Sports: St. John's To Part Ways With Coach Norm Roberts After Six Seasons

"I have great respect for Norm Roberts and want to express, publicly, my appreciation for his accomplishments during the past six years," said Rev. Donald J. Harrington, C.M., President of St. John's University. "Norm recruited student-athletes who have represented the University well, both on the court and in the classroom. His professionalism and the exemplary way in which he and his players have conducted themselves have restored the integrity of our men's basketball program. We are deeply grateful for all Norm has done and wish him and his family great success in the years ahead."

"My wife [Pascale] and I appreciate the great opportunity to have coached at St. John's, and would like to offer our gratitude and appreciation to Father Harrington, Father Maher, Jim Pellow and Chris Monasch. They have all been very supportive of me, my staff and my family," said Roberts. "Having grown up in Queens, I never could have imagined being afforded the opportunity to coach at one of the most prestigious basketball programs in the country. I do believe the program is in a much stronger position than when I arrived, and is poised to take a major step up both in the BIG EAST and nationally. This is due to the hard work of our coaching staff and our players, and I wish this group of young men continued success in the future."

Red Storm Sports: Statements from AD Chris Monasch, school president Reverend Donald Harrington, Norm Roberts

Chris Monasch:
We appreciate Norm's hard work to put a competitive product on the court and bring in student-athletes with great character. There is no doubt that we have improved during his tenure. We have a proud tradition of winning, still ranking among the top seven programs in the nation with a pedigree of Hall of Fame coaches like Joe Lapchick and Lou Carnesecca. At this time we feel a change in the direction of the leadership of the program will be of the best benefit to us in the long-term. Nine seniors will comprise a mostly-upperclass team next year, and we expect to have an extremely competitive year. Over the course of the 2010-11 season, we will also have to gain commitments to replace those nine scholarships, and we believe that success can be attained in the near future in building consistently from year-to-year, which will be the responsibility of a new coach and coaching staff.

The decision was not made on a game-to-game or week-to-week basis. What we have been evaluating is a body of work over time. The challenges of what Norm and his staff faced were certainly great and we appreciate how far he has brought us. At this time, we feel that making a coaching change is the most efficient way to reach the next level of success as a men's basketball program, for all of our current student-athletes and for the ones that will join our program over the next several years."

On the process for a coaching search and ideal candidates:

"We will look nationally for a proven winner at a high level who will be able to impart that success to our program. We seek a candidate who has an understanding of the sports culture of New York City and its pressures and media demands, who has the ability to recruit New York student-athletes, and who recognizes the importance of the winning tradition of St. John's men's basketball. We are looking for a candidate with a solid plan for marked improvement on the conference and national levels, while seeking to maintain the high level of integrity on and off the court that we have restored over the past several seasons.

In terms of any possible candidates and possible salary, I do not wish to discuss those details at this time."

On the current Red Storm team and NLI signee Ronald Roberts:

"Myself, Brian Colleary and Fr. James Maher, C.M., will meet with the team this afternoon. Moving forward, we will continue to meet with the student-athletes to discuss their individual situations. We are committed to our student-athletes and to NLI signee Ronald Roberts. We believe we are going to have an extremely competitive team next year, and when the new coach is in place, all of the student-athletes' concerns and issues will be worked out.

In accordance with NCAA regulations, both current student-athletes and men's basketball prospective student-athletes who have signed a NLI with St. John's University must obtain written permission from the University to speak with or contact another NCAA member institution before speaking with any coaching staff member from another school.

NY Post: St. John's fires basketball coach Roberts

NY Daily News: Sources: Coach Norm Roberts expects to be let go by St. John's Red Storm