Minnesota AD releases statement on decision to part ways with Richard Pitino
After eight seasons, Minnesota is moving on from head men’s basketball coach Richard Pitino.
Stadium’s Jeff Goodman was first to report the news on Monday, and athletic director Mark Coyle made the official announcement hours later. The program will now begin a search to fill the vacancy for the 2021-22 season.
“I recently met with Richard and told him that we were moving in a different direction. Richard is a tremendous person and coach, and I want to thank him, Jill and their family for their commitment to Minnesota,” Coyle said in a statement. “We wish them well in their next endeavor.
“Decisions like this are never easy, but after evaluating this season and the previous eight years of our program under Richard, it is clear to me that new leadership is needed. We have one of the best practice facilities in the nation, a historic competition venue and a state that produces top-caliber talent. This is an extremely attractive job, and we will immediately start a nationwide search for our next head coach.”
Pitino was the head coach at Minnesota from 2013-21, compiling a 141-123 record over eight seasons. He guided the Gophers to three postseason appearances — winning the NIT championship in 2014 and NCAA Tournament appearances in 2017 and 2019.
Minnesota was on track to earn a spot into the tournament field again this season, sitting at 13-7 with quality wins over Michigan, Iowa and Purdue on the resume. However, the Gophers lost seven straight games to close out the regular season, ending 13-14.
The Gophers then finished out with a win over Northwestern in the B1G Tournament but lost to Ohio State in the second round and posted a final record of 14-15.