If the reports are to believed, then UNLV Head Basketball Coach Lon Kruger will accept the head coaching position at Oklahoma today. The Las Vegas Sun and ESPN are reporting that Lon Kruger will take the job at Oklahoma and receive a seven-year deal worth between $2.2 and $2.3 million per year. One thing is for certain is that most of the players don't know yet. Kruger has called an emergency team meeting tonight, most likely to announce to the team his leaving of the team.
This shocking, and yet isn't entirely upsetting. Kruger restored the Runnin' Rebels back to the national stage after 14 years of dormancy and didn't undermine the program. He left at the right time, giving a ton of talent to whoever takes his place. The candidate list looks very good and that should be up as well pretty soon.
The consensus reaction from most UNLV fans on twitter is that they don't blame Kruger. He brought the team out of the dark ages and Oklahoma simply had way more money than UNLV could offer, due to the financial stress that has been put on the athletic budget.
Former UNLV head coach Jerry Tarkarnian weighed in on Kruger's decision to leave UNLV for Oklahoma:
"I thought Lon did a great job here. His teams always played hard and they were very competitive. He also did a great job off the floor. He was good with people. He was good with me and a lot of guys who played for me."
Tarkanian would recommend former Rebel guard Reggie Theus to replace Kruger. That would be a good choice since Theus played at UNLV, spend 13 years playing in the NBA, he coached in the NBA for three years with the Sacramento Kings but his biggest accomplishment is that he made New Mexico State a player in only two season. Tark also feels that Theus would be a 'lifer' if he got the job.
Kruger is a well traveled coach and has been successful at every college stop which has included coaching at Florida and Illinois while having an overall record of 479-304 to go along with 13 NCAA tournament appearances.
To get the reaction from Oklahoma fans, check out SB Nation's Oklahoma Blog, Crimson and Cream Machine.
I should have my full thoughts as well as a candidate list up within about two or three hours due to me currently being tied up in other things.
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