Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
In what should come as a surprise to no one, applications for the Monmouth men’s basketball job are pouring in.
A source close to the athletic department said the school had already received 55 applications to serve as Dave Calloway’s successor.
According to the source, among those in the mix are Christian Brothers Academy coach Geoff Billet (pictured); Davidson assistant Jimmy Fox; Dennis Wolff, the Director of Basketball Operations at Virginia Tech; Temple assistant Matt Langel; NJIT coach Jim Engles; Rutgers assistant Van Macon; and Notre Dame assistant Martin Ingelsby.
St. Patrick coach Kevin Boyle, former Rutgers coach Fred Hill and Wagner assistant Bobby Hurley have also been linked to the job. Several sources indicated Hurley would not take the job because he doesn’t want to coach against his brother, Wagner coach Dan Hurley.
Sources close to former St. John’s coach Norm Roberts said he is not a candidate.
Billet is seen by many as a strong candidate. As an assistant at Monmouth under Calloway, he helped lead the Hawks to two Northeast Conference titles and two NCAA Tournament appearances.
Billet has the endorsement of Jersey Shore Warriors AAU coach Tony Sagona.
“Billet is a great fit,” Sagona said. “He was here as an assistant. Geoff was a Big East assistant at both Rutgers and at Seton Hall. He played at Rutgers. He’s a local guy. He’s got contacts, college coaches, all the high school coaches.”
Sagona also said both of Monmouth’s 2011 commitments, Andrew Nicholas and Austin Tillotson of Eastern York (Pa.), were honoring their commitments to Monmouth. Both play for the Warriors.
Another factor to keep in mind that is that Dennis Coleman is on the board of trustees. Coleman represents over 30 head coaches in basketball and football, including Jamie Dixon of Pitt, Jeff Capel of Oklahoma, Phil Martelli of St. Joseph’s, Fran Dunphy of Temple and Johnny Dawkins of Stanford.
Coleman did not immediately respond to a phone message Tuesday.
The source said interviews will begin early next week and that Monmouth wants to get a new coach in quickly.
“They want to get it over within 2-3 weeks,” the source said. “It’s one of the best jobs in the [Northeast] Conference. It’s better than a lot of Patriot and America East jobs.”
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Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.