After two consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, two CAA titles, and three seasons at UNC Wilmington, it’s no surprise that head coach Kevin Keatts’s name has popped up when discussing replacements for many high-profile jobs.
As of today, it seems like there’s a leader in the battle to hire the talented mid-major coach. CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein tweeted on Friday afternoon that North Carolina State — who fired Mark Gottfried earlier in the season, but only parted ways with him after the ACC Tournament — will meet with Keatts today.
NC State will meet today with UNC-Wilmington's Kevin Keatts, per multiple sources. Has emerged as a primary candidate to fill vacancy.— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) March 17, 2017
Keatts, the former Louisville assistant who won a national title in 2013 as part of Rick Pitino’s staff, would be a solid hire for any school, let alone NC State. In two short years, he was able to take a program that hadn’t seen success in some time to its first NCAA Tournament in a decade.
The Wolfpack themselves have had two consecutive disappointing seasons, so it’s understandable why they’d pursue a skilled coach like Keatts. His track record speaks for itself, and this certainly won’t be the last news we hear about him this March.