Seton Hall to hire Manhattan's Gonzalez

Updated: April 6, 2006, 5:35 PM ET
By Andy Katz | ESPN.com

Seton Hall will announce Manhattan's Bobby Gonzalez as its next men's basketball coach at a news conference Friday, university spokesman Jeff Andriesse confirmed Thursday.

Gonzalez scheduled a team meeting at 4 p.m. Thursday to tell them of his decision.

Multiple sources told ESPN.com that Gonzalez was chosen late Wednesday night. Seton Hall athletic director Joe Quinlan began telling other candidates Thursday morning that the school was going in another direction.

Seton Hall also interviewed Ohio's Tim O'Shea, former Boston Celtics and Duquesne coach John Carroll, Davidson coach Bob McKillop and Pittsburgh assistant Barry Rohrssen.

Seton Hall reportedly asked for permission to speak with George Mason coach Jim Larranaga. But Larranaga never spoke with Seton Hall and told ESPN.com Thursday that he is scheduled to meet with GMU athletic director Tom O'Connor on Friday to discuss a contract extension. Larranaga said he wants to stay with the Patriots, who he just led to their first ever Final Four.

Naming Gonzalez as Louis Orr's replacement should be met well in the New York-New Jersey area. Gonzalez has strong ties to the area. He's a tireless recruiter and has always wanted a Big East job in the area, once interviewing for St. John's.

Gonzalez led the Jaspers to the NCAA Tournament two seasons ago, beating Florida in a 12-5 game in the first round before losing to Wake Forest in the second round. Gonzalez also led the Jaspers to the NCAA Tournament in 2003 as well. Manhattan has been a constant contender in the MAAC under him.

The Pirates went to the NCAA Tournament twice in the last three seasons under Orr, including beating Arizona in the first round two seasons ago. Seton Hall lost to Wichita State in the first round this season. Seton Hall fired Orr with two seasons left on his contract.

Seton Hall (18-12, 9-7 in the Big East) is facing a major rebuilding job with no signed recruits and the departures of seniors Donald Copeland and Kelly Whitney, the top two scorers from this past season.

Manhattan (20-11, 14-4) lost to Old Dominion in the NIT second round after winning at Maryland in the first round.

Andy Katz is a senior writer for ESPN.com.

Andy Katz | email

Senior Writer, ESPN.com