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Bryce Drew fired as Vanderbilt Men’s Basketball Coach after three seasons

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Bryce Drew fired as Vanderbilt Men’s Basketball Coach after three seasons

Photo by Ziyi Liu

Photo by Ziyi Liu

Photo by Ziyi Liu

Photo by Ziyi Liu

Cutler Klein, Sports Editor

UPDATE 2:54 PM CT

Bryce Drew has released a statement on his personal Twitter account after he was let go from his post as Vanderbilt Men’s Basketball Head Coach on Friday.

“From the fans to the faculty, we are grateful to have met so many fantastic people, and to have worked alongside some of the most remarkable student-athletes and coaches in the country,” Drew said. “We want to thank you all for the enormous support and outpouring of love we have received today and wish the Commodores nothing but success in the future.”

In addition, Jeff Borzello of ESPN reported that Vanderbilt is attempting to “reassign” Drew rather than let him walk altogether to avoid paying a massive buyout. Jeff Goodman of Stadium first reported this, but has since deleted his tweet on the subject.

ORIGINAL STORY 8:44 AM: 

The Bryce Drew experiment has been abandoned.

Vanderbilt Athletic Director Malcolm Turner announced Friday morning that Bryce Drew will not return as head coach of the Men’s Basketball team after three seasons on the job.

“Vanderbilt is committed to competing at the highest levels on and off the court. After careful consideration, we’ve decided to make a change to the leadership of our men’s basketball program,” said Turner in a release. “Bryce has represented Vanderbilt in exceptional fashion in his time here. I appreciate all of the contributions Bryce has made over the past three seasons to Vanderbilt, and we wish him all the best.”

The Commodores finished 9-23 this past season and 0-19 in SEC play, becoming the first SEC program to finish winless in-conference since Georgia Tech in 1954.

The story was first reported by Jeff Goodman of Stadium, who also reported that the meeting to terminate Drew was the first between Turner and Drew. He also reported that Turner attended just one men’s basketball practice.

Goodman also tweeted in a since-deleted tweet that Vanderbilt is trying to “reassign” Drew rather than let him walk to join another program.

Drew was hired from Valparaiso in 2016 to replace Kevin Stallings, and made the NCAA Tournament in his first season. Prior to this season, he brought in the best recruiting class in school history highlighted by five-star point guard Darius Garland out of Brentwood Academy (TN).

After Garland’s season ended after only a few games due to a knee injury, the Commodores never recovered.

Turner will lead the search for Drew’s replacement with support from Chancellor Nicholas Zeppos. It is worth noting that Turner spent five years as president of the NBA G League prior to coming to Vanderbilt, so that experience could be a factor in his coaching search.

Stay tuned for more on this story as it develops.

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About the Writer
Cutler Klein, Sports Editor

Cutler Klein ('19) is the Sports Editor of the Vanderbilt Hustler. He previously served as Assistant Sports Editor. He is majoring in Communication Studies...

1 Comment

One Response to “Bryce Drew fired as Vanderbilt Men’s Basketball Coach after three seasons”

  1. Thomas Huynh on March 23rd, 2019 3:29 am

    As a Vanderbilt alumnus (’04) and a big Vandy sports fan, I find this disappointing. We all might want to take a step back and remember that education, not sports, must be #1 at Vanderbilt. Character, not winning at all costs, must be #1 at Vanderbilt. Coach Drew had injuries but also had heart. I love competition but not cutthroat. #AnchorDown

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