Majerus will not coach Trojans until 2005-06

Updated: December 15, 2004, 2:13 PM ET
By Andy Katz | ESPN.com

Rick Majerus accepted an offer Tuesday night to coach the Southern California men's basketball team beginning at the end of the 2004-05 season, multiple sources have told ESPN.com.

Majerus
Majerus

The former Utah coach is expected to sign a five-year contract with the Trojans and will resign immediately as an ESPN college basketball analyst.

At USC (3-3), Majerus will succeed Henry Bibby, who was fired last week. Jim Saia will remain as interim coach through this season. Saia is 1-1 since taking over for Bibby, who coached the Trojans to a 2-2 record before being dismissed.

USC is expected to announce Majerus' hiring as early as Wednesday. Majerus is in Los Angeles and is expected to be on campus Wednesday afternoon.

The 57-year-old Majerus was in the first year of a five-year deal with ESPN and is expected to pay a negotiated buyout to the network. He worked his last game for ESPN on Monday night in Philadelphia, where Wake Forest beat Temple.

Majerus has longed to coach at Southern California and told those close to him that this was the only job for which he would leave ESPN. He wrestled with the decision but couldn't foresee missing out on the opportunity. He apparently will lay low and rest for the next three months and not coach over Saia's shoulder.

Majerus quit last January in his 15th season with the Utes because of health reasons. Majerus is known to be one of college basketball's best teachers of the game. He coached Utah to the national championship game in 1998, losing to Kentucky, one of the school's 10 NCAA tournament appearances during his tenure. He has also had coaching stops at Ball State, Marquette and with the Milwaukee Bucks as an assistant coach.

Andy Katz is a senior writer at ESPN.com.

Andy Katz | email

Senior Writer, ESPN.com

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