Rick Pitino is garnering interest from a number of notable college basketball programs. The former Kentucky and Louisville leader is a hot name on the head coaching market.
Pitino currently has his Iona Gaels primed for an NCAA Tournament matchup with four-seed UCONN, his second appearance in the Big Dance over the last three years. Iona won 25 games in back-to-back seasons.
That hasn’t stopped the media from asking about the possibility of accepting a new role for next season. Earlier this week, he responded to those inquiries.
Pitino has been mentioned in connection with a few different opportunities, which include St. Johns, Georgetown, and Maryland. He’s reportedly interested in one of those openings.
That job is with the Red Storm, who parted ways with Mike Anderson at the end of the year.
There is significant interest on both sides with the St. John’s job and Iona coach Rick Pitino, source told @Stadium. https://t.co/O7k4iJiapi
— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanHoops) March 10, 2023
Rick Pitino responded to those reports when asked earlier in the week. Here’s what he had to say.
“At one time, there was talk of an extension, a new contract [with Iona], but it didn’t work out. That doesn’t mean there’s hard feelings. It’s the opposite. There are great feelings…
“At the end of the year, I’ll look at certain situations. Even though I’m local, I haven’t been to the St. Johns campus in 30 years. I don’t even know how to get there. I’d have to use navigation. So, it’s not as easy as people think.”
While it wasn’t necessarily a denial, maybe it gives Iona hope that they keep the head coach on the sidelines. We’ll see how far Rick Pitino can take the Gaels in the NCAA Tournament. After that, he’ll have a decision to make on his future.