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All TCU. All the time.

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The Skiff Orientation Edition: Welcome, Class of 28!
The Skiff Orientation Edition: Welcome, Class of '28!
By Georgie London, Staff Writer
Published May 13, 2024
Advice from your fellow Frogs, explore Fort Worth, pizza reviews and more. 

Finding Trent Johnson’s replacement: A few names to consider

TCU head coach Trent Johnson instructs his team during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Texas Tech in the first round of the Big 12 conference tournament in Kansas City, Mo., Wednesday, March 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

TCU head basketball coach Trent Johnson was fired late Sunday night after finishing his fourth season at TCU.

Johnson went 50-79 with the Frogs. This included an abysmal 8-64 record (.111 winning percentage) in Big 12 Conference play, making him statistically the worst coach in Big 12 history.


But now, the new search for a coach begins. Here are a few of the possible candidates for the position.

In this Dec. 28, 2014, file photo, Oklahoma City Thunder coach Scott Brooks yells from the sideline during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Dallas Mavericks in Dallas. The Thunder fired Brooks on Wednesday, April 22, 2015. (AP Photo/LM Otero, File)

SCOTT BROOKS, former Oklahoma City Thunder head coach:

Brooks was fired after the 2015 season after missing the playoffs for the first time during his tenure with Oklahoma City. He was very successful with the Thunder, taking the team to the NBA Finals in 2011-2012. He finished with an overall record of 338-207.

Brooks played for a year at TCU before transferring to San Joaquin Delta College to be closer to home. Brooks went on to transfer to University of California Irvine before going into the NBA.

Brooks went on to play ten NBA seasons for six different teams.

Brooks would be a great hire for TCU because he would bring years of NBA experience, which is what a lot of top recruits value in a head coach. He also has experience coaching two of the NBA’s best players: Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

Although Brooks has never coached college basketball, he knows how to deal with superstars and would give TCU a huge edge in recruiting.  Brooks is a young coach — 50 years old — who runs an up-tempo style and would be a huge get for TCU.

Stephen F. Austin coach Brad Underwood talks about his team’s third-round game against UCLA on Sunday in the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament, at a news conference Saturday, March 22, 2014, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)

BRAD UNDERWOOD, Stephen F. Austin head coach:

Underwood is in his third season as the head coach for SFA. He has an 88-13 record, which includes a third straight trip to the NCAA tournament this year.

The Frogs have never had more than four wins in conference play during one season. Underwood, while in a much weaker conference, is 53-1 in conference play. Playing stronger in the conference is something TCU needs to improve on, and Underwood could help with that.   

Although he has only been a head coach for three years, Underwood has over 20 years of experience as an assistant.  After the 2013-14 season, Underwood signed an eight-year contract extension worth $400,000 a year.

TCU could throw a lot more money at him, and with the Frogs being in the Big 12, Underwood would definitely hear TCU out.

Texas Arlington head coach Scott Cross talks to his players during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Texas, Tuesday, Dec. 2, 2014, in Austin, Texas. Texas won 63-53. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

SCOTT CROSS, University of Texas-Arlington head coach: 

Scott Cross has led UT-Arlington to three NCAA tournament appearances and, in nine years at the helm, is UTA’s winningest coach in school history. Being from Arlington, Cross knows the DFW area well, which bodes well for recruiting.

Cross is 153-129 at UTA but is the only coach in the school’s history to have a winning record. One problem: the 41-year-old is coaching at his alma mater and this week signed a contract extension that will keep him at UTA until 2020.

Like Underwood at Stephen F. Austin, Cross could receive more money and have the chance to coach in a stronger conference if he were to make the move to TCU.

Pittsburgh head coach Jamie Dixon reacts during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament against North Carolina, Thursday, March 10, 2016, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

JAMIE DIXON, Pittsburgh head coach:

Dixon played basketball at TCU from 1984-87 before getting drafted by the Washington Bullets. Dixon would be a great hire for TCU, but he is probably the least likely to leave his current job.

After the 2012-13 season, Dixon signed a contract extension with Pittsburgh and is making around 3.2 million per year. Dixon has been sought after by other top programs and has turned them down in the past, telling reporters that he wants to finish his career in Pittsburgh.

Dixon is 326-119 in his thirteen years at Pittsburgh, and it is unlikely he returns to Fort Worth to coach the Frogs.

Dayton head coach Archie Miller works the bench during the first half of their NCAA college basketball game against St. Bonaventure, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016, in Dayton, Ohio. St. Bonaventure won 79-72. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

ARCHIE MILLER, Dayton head coach:

Miller has coaching in his blood. His brother is Arizona head coach Sean Miller, and they’re the sons of Pennsylvania’s winningest coach, John Miller.

Although he has no real connection to TCU, the Frogs should give him a call. He has worked under Thad Matta and Sean Miller at two of the most prestigious college basketball universities.

He is 115-54 in his five seasons at Dayton but is 78-27 in his last three years. Dayton has made the tournament in those three years, making the elite eight in 2014 and the round of 32 in 2015. Dayton is a 7 seed in the upcoming tournament.

Miller is under contract until 2021-22, making around $652,000 a year. TCU could definitely throw a little more at him to try and lure him away.

Miller, a young energetic coach, has proven he can change a program and is the type of coach TCU needs.

KOBE BRYANT, Los Angeles Lakers guard:

While it is extremely unlikely that Bryant would come coach basketball out in Fort Worth, it is pretty fun to think about.

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