In a press release, Ohio State University confirmed that Thad Matta would no longer be coaching the program.
The university didn’t give a concrete reason for the resignation, but some believe that poor health played a role in it. Matta battled health problems for the last couple of years, and he told reporters that it got to the point where “I went through a year where I couldn’t walk. I couldn’t take my shoes off after a game, my pants off after a game.”
Whatever the reasoning, the decision was mutual, according to ESPN:
“I felt comfortable after the season when I sat down with Thad that we had a plan. [But] recruiting is a major part of it, and we weren’t winning the recruiting battles,” Smith said. “As we started talking about it Friday, the flow of the conversation took me to the realization as I said to him, ‘This might be the time to make a leadership change,’ and he agreed.”
Matta spent 13th seasons at Ohio State, and the team put together an unimpressive 17-15 record. It marked the second-straight campaign where the Buckeyes missed the NCAA Tournament. His 337-123 record with the school is highlighted by two Final Four appearances, four Conference Tournament Championships and nine trips to March Madness.
It’s clear he built an incredible program, and the accolades for his players match his. Matta produced four Consensus All-Americans with the Buckeyes: D’Angelo Russell, Jared Sullinger, Evan Turner and Greg Oden. Before making his way to the university in 2004, he spent three seasons at Xavier and made three-straight NCAA Tournaments. Additionally, he coached the Musketeers to two A-10 titles with a 78-23 record in those years.
He kicked off his head coaching career with Butler in 2000 and guided the Bulldogs to the Big Dance after posting a 24-8 record.
Matta might eventually make his way back to coaching, but nothing’s set in stone: “never say never.”
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