Hewitt happy at Georgia Tech
NEW YORK -- Paul Hewitt didn't look longingly at the St. John's bench Sunday when his Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets beat the Red Storm 79-66.
Even though Hewitt is believed to be the Red Storm's top target for the head coaching vacancy, the timing has passed for Hewitt to be interested in the sudden opening, according to a source close to the Georgia Tech coach.
Hewitt didn't want to discuss the opening publicly in advance of Sunday's game, but don't expect any bombshells from him.
He's staying at Georgia Tech for the foreseeable future.
Hewitt was a runner-up to Mike Jarvis six years ago when Hewitt was at Siena and the Red Storm hired Jarvis away from George Washington to replace Fran Fraschilla. And Hewitt maintains a strong relationship with former St. John's coach Lou Carnesseca and former St. John's assistant Ron Rutledge.
All that means is Hewitt would take a phone call from St. John's. But it will not go any further.
The source said Hewitt loves his undefeated Yellow Jackets and the future of the program. Also, the source said Hewitt is thrilled to work for athletic director Dave Braine, who has given Hewitt raises -- none of them initiated by the coach -- in each of his three seasons. Hewitt also has plenty of security after the administration gave him a five-year rollover contract following last season's disappointing 16-15 finish.
Hewitt also is fond of Atlanta and does not feel the lure of his Long Island roots. He also doesn't want to leave the ACC, especially with the Yellow Jackets expected to challenge for the title. Thus far, Hewitt's having a national coach of the year season, although that could change in the ACC. But Hewitt doesn't want to go anywhere as long as Braine is at Tech -- and there's no indication Braine is leaving.
As for the coaching search at St. John's, it will be a long, arduous process -- and don't expect it to include Memphis' John Calipari or Providence's Tim Welsh.
Calipari still hasn't signed a new contract that would extend his deal through 2010, but he isn't interested in St. John's. Calipari doesn't want to leave Memphis and certainly wouldn't go to a school that doesn't play Division I football. Also, St. John's won't be able to pay Calipari the $1 million plus it would take to lure him away.
Meanwhile, Welsh said he's not interested in leaving Providence. He said he has a great relationship with his athletic director, Bob Driscoll. Welsh also makes close to $750,000 on a contract that has five years remaining. That's equal to money that St. John's could pay, but Welsh's money goes further in Rhode Island than New York. The lure of returning to his native state of New York isn't strong.
Former North Carolina coach Matt Doherty would be interested if called by St. John's. Other names that will continue to surface are Manhattan's Bobby Gonzalez, Davidson's Bob McKillop, Rhode Island's Jim Baron, Boston University's Dennis Wolff and former Georgia Tech coach Bobby Cremins.
Meanwhile, the last three St. John's coaches -- Jarvis, Fraschilla and Brian Mahoney, who were all fired -- attended the Texas-Duke game. Jarvis was a guest of Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski at Madison Square Garden on Saturday. Jarvis sat behind the bench with his son, former St. John's assistant Mike Jarvis II.
The elder Jarvis said he didn't know why he was fired earlier this week and reiterated that the move caught him totally by surprise.
"This is a decision that shows coaches have to be ready,'' Jarvis said. Apparently, Jarvis was fired because it got personal between him and president Father Donald Harrington. Jarvis wouldn't divulge specifics, but the president apparently wasn't pleased with Jarvis' attitude.
The last time a Division I coach was fired without NCAA transgressions or legal issues prior to the conference play was at Brigham Young when Roger Reid was fired in 1996. Assistant Tony Ingle replaced him and the Cougars won just one game.
Andy Katz is a senior writer at ESPN.com.
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