Mark Gottfried Fired as NCSU Men’s Basketball Coach

Cameron Thomas, Sports Copy Editor/Editorial Cartoonist

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Mark Gottfried yells to his team during NC State’s game against Clemson n the 2017 New York Life ACC Tournament at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., Tuesday, March 7, 2017. Photo take by Ethan Hyman, [email protected]

North Carolina State University men’s head basketball coach Mark Gottfried was recently fired, as announced by Debbie Yow, NCSU athletic director on February 16. He plans not to leave the NCSU team until the season is over.

Gottfried led the team with a 122-82 record and 47-55  in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC). While coached by Gottfried, the Wolfpack made the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) tournament four out of six years. This season NC State scored 2483 points by the end of the season, just one point more than the 2015-2016 season, where they scored 2482 points. He played one season of college basketball for Oral Roberts University and three seasons for the University of Alabama. He made it to the Sweet Sixteen in each of his three seasons with the Crimson Tide.

 Yow believes that firing Gottfried is necessary for the program moving forward.

“Mark and I met today to discuss the future direction of our program. While it has long been my practice to evaluate the body of work at season’s end, in reviewing the overall direction of our program, we believe a change in leadership is necessary moving forward. Our focus now remains on supporting our student-athletes and staff over the final weeks of our season,” said Yow, according to CBS Sports.

University of Kentucky men’s basketball coach John Calipari staunchly defended Gottfried in a press conference after an 82-77 win against Georgia.

“What if Mark Gottfried goes on a run at the end and gets to the NCAA Tournament, which he was in four out of five years? Two Sweet 16s, which is not done at NC State. What happens if he now if he goes and wins and gets another team [in?] He had good players but they’re young, they’re like my team. It’s hard to do this with young guys.” said Calipari.

NC State found a replacement for Gottfried in Kevin Keatts, former head men’s basketball coach of University of North Carolina at Wilmington. Keatts began coaching as an assistant at Southwestern Michigan College for the 1996-97 season, later moving on to coach at Hargrave Military Academy as an assistant for two seasons before being promoted to head coach. Keatts has also coached at Marshall University and Louisville in his career.

“Kevin Keatts is I believe the right man for the job. He runs a tight ship, discipline, teamwork, and fast. What he did in his 4-years at UNC-W is remarkable and if I can quote his press conference- “why not NC State?” said Chris Remaley, teacher.

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