Tubby Smith out at Memphis, focus is on Penny Hardaway, report says

Tubby Smith out at Memphis, focus is on Penny Hardaway, report says

Tubby Smith out at Memphis, focus is on Penny Hardaway, report says

Per Giannotto, it will cost Memphis $9.75 million to fire Smith.

Memphis issued a statement saying only that an agreement of "separation" had been reached in the "best financial interest" of the university with details still to be finalized.

Smith arrived to Memphis and inherited situations like Keelon Lawson, the father of two players and another highly sought after local recruit who was hired by Pastner as an assistant so his kids would play for the Tigers.

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He has a career record of 597-302 with most of his success coming at Kentucky.

Memphis has now failed to reach the NCAA tournament in four straight seasons after making it 10 out of 12 years from 2002-03 through 2013-14. Tubby Smith, looking to run a clean program and not risk NCAA violations, fired Keelon Lawson and nearly immediately, the local media declared Smith a problem for Memphis basketball.

Asked upon leaving the meeting if he was still the Tigers head coach, Tubby Smith simply said, "No".

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Attendance dropped to 6,225 this season, Memphis' lowest attendance since 1969-70 and putting the university at risk of missing out on a $800,000 payment from the NBA's Memphis Grizzlies who control the FedExForum.

Memphis made it to the American tournament semifinals despite losing leading scorer Jeremiah Martin to a broken foot in February. With an ultra-talented crop of recruits in the area on the horizon - majority with connections to Hardaway through his AAU program or high school coaching - it isn't a shock that the school wanted to shake things up.

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