Rick Pitino is said to be the first choice of the Maryland basketball team as head coach

The Maryland basketball team is looking for a new head coach and according to a report, they have their eyes on Rick Pitino.

The Maryland Terrapins need a new head coach after parting ways with Mark Turgeon late last year.

Looks like they’ve focused their search on one big name: Rick Pitino.

The Sports Junkies Podcast with Jason Bishop and Eric Bickel reported as much on Wednesday.

Maryland Basketball Reportedly Wants to Hire Rick Pitino

“We don’t say Rick is the guy,” Bishop said. “We just said that Maryland really likes Pitino. It is their top dog. “

Bickel echoed that sentiment and added a few more details.

“He was their number one choice,” he said. “They’re really hard on him right now and have a couple of sponsors leading the way.”

Pitino currently coaches at Iona, where he has been since 2020. In his first season, Gaels made it to the NCAA Tournament. This year they ranked first in Metro Atlantic this year with a 23-5 record.

There is no doubt that Pitino is an excellent basketball coach. But there’s a reason he’s currently coaching Iona instead of a larger program.

He led multiple teams to the Final Four, winning the national championship in 1996 with Kentucky and 2013 with Louisville. However, he has had a lot of trouble in his career. His 2013 national championship was vacated because of a sex scandal involving escorts and rookies. The show was also implicated in the 2017 FBI corruption scandal, which resulted in his contract termination.

After coaching abroad, Pitino got another chance to coach college basketball with Iona and call it his “final stop” as a head coach.

So Maryland may have to battle against two waves: The potential backlash over hiring a coach with such a messy past, and convincing the coach to say make the move.

For more NCAA Basketball For news, analysis, opinions and features, check out more from the FanSided college basketball section to stay on top of the latest action.

https://fansided.com/2022/03/02/maryland-basketball-rick-pitino-first-choice/ Rick Pitino is said to be the first choice of the Maryland basketball team as head coach

John Verrall

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