By LARRY VAUGHT
Hall of Fame coach Rick Pitino is back in college coaching after a two-year absence after being named the new head coach at Iona on Saturday.
After his hiring was announced on Saturday, Pitino did an interview with Evan Daniels of 247Sports.
One question that caught my attention was the answer Pitino gave when Daniels asked him after everything that happened that led to his firing at Louisville if he was surprised he was back coaching in college. The answer was pure Pitino.
“ I was only suspended five games, there were guys that have been suspended 11 and 10 games. I was only suspended five,” Pitino said.
“So they (NCAA officials) did their due diligence and they found that they knew I didn’t know what was going on or I would have been given a heavy suspension. They interviewed over 80 people and found nothing except failure to monitor my assistant coach.
“The NCAA has kept me out of college basketball for three years, I couldn’t even get an interview. It’s an opportunity that I’m looking forward to.”
Not quite sure the NCAA kept him out. No one would hire him before Iona took the chance Saturday.
ESPN analyst Dick Vitale said it was a “home run” hire for Iona and immediately came up with an idea for a game next season.