Tom Crean has agreed to a six-year, $3.2 million deal to to become the next head coach of Georgia basketball, according to Dawgnation’s Seth Emerson.
The UGA athletic board approved the hire on Thursday night, soon after McGarity and UGA president Jere Morehead got off an airplane in Athens. They met earlier in the day with Crean at his home in Bradenton, Fla.
Crean has been serving as a college basketball analyst for ESPN this season, his first away from the sidelines after spending nine seasons as head coach of Indiana. The Hoosiers fired him after missing the NCAA Tournament following a No. 11 in the AP Top 25 poll for the 2016-17 season. Crean made four NCAA Tournaments and won two Big Ten titles, but also missed five NCAA Tournaments and finished unranked six times..
Before coming to Indiana, Crean coached Marquette for nine seasons and made the NCAA Tournament five times.
Georgia was in the market for a new coach after the Bulldogs elected to part with Mark Fox after missing the NCAA Tournament for the seventh time in nine seasons in Athens. The Dawgs were reportedly close to hiring former Ohio State coach Thad Matta this week before talks broke off.
“I’ve never lost the drive to coach, but I haven’t (been) consumed with the fact I’m not coaching,” Crean told The Chicago Tribune in January. “I’ve tried to dive into everything I’m involved with. I just look at everything as an opportunity to be even better than what I was and what we were.
“I wouldn’t say 10 months later I’m used to not coaching, but I’m very comfortable with learning. Do I expect to coach again? Absolutely, but it’s not (as if) I have to do this by (a certain date). I have to make sure it’s the right situation, where you are surrounded by people who get what your job is.