Pastner to Memphis; Tigers Working on Ebanks, HarrisJosh Pastner will join the Memphis staff as an assistant coach and lead recruiter, according to various sources. Pastner recruited Tamir Jackson of St. Benedict’s to Arizona before Jackson ultimately chose UAB.
Pastner, 30, has been on the Arizona coaching staff since 2001. A walk-on as a player at Arizona, Pastner quickly moved up the ranks and was instrumental in the Wildcats’ recruiting efforts over the past few seasons. He is regarded in the industry as one of the most well-connected assistants in the country. A native of Houston, he has strong recruiting ties to Texas, where his father, Hal Pastner, runs youth basketball programs.
The Arizona staff has been in a state of upheaval over the past year. Head coach Lute Olson took a leave of absence in 2007-08 but is returning next season and has subsequently reshaped his coaching staff. Last week, Arizona did not renew the contract of assistant Miles Simon. Earlier this week, Arizona hired Mike Dunlap as associate head coach. Pastner was hoping to be named to that position. After getting passed over, he decided to accept an offer to join John Robic and Rod Strickland on John Calipari’s staff. The Memphis staff lost two assistants last month when Chuck Martin took the head coaching job at Marist and Derek Kellogg landed the head job at UMass.
We hear Memphis’ staff will now turn to trying to close out Devin Ebanks and work very hard on getting big man Rashanti Harris eligible for the fall. The 6-8 Harris out of Columbus (MS) New Hope) is an ’08 player who has already enrolled at The Patterson (N.C.) School under Chris Chaney. We hear it’s a long shot that Harris would be eligible but it could happen. Harris left two weeks ago for Patterson