Menzies replaces Theus as head coach at New Mexico St.

Updated: June 29, 2007, 11:59 AM ET
Associated Press

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- University of Louisville assistant men's basketball coach Marvin Menzies has been named head coach of the New Mexico State Aggies, The Associated Press has learned.

NMSU president Michael Martin said Thursday that Menzies, an assistant coach to Rick Pitino, will be in Las Cruces on Friday to be introduced as the new coach. The school has scheduled a 3 p.m. news conference.

Menzies, 45, becomes the second-straight Pitino assistant to land the NMSU job. He succeeds Reggie Theus, who was named the head coach of the Sacramento Kings earlier this month.

Martin told The Associated Press he was "fully content and confident that the Aggies had landed the best man for the job."

Menzies was selected from a pool of several candidates that included both assistants, Damon Archibald and Chris Pompey, under Theus and former Arizona State coach and NMSU alum Rob Evans.

"We had a wonderful group of candidates and any one of them would have been a great choice," Martin said.

Martin said he and athletic director McKinley Boston felt Menzies would bring continuity, consistency and high quality to the NMSU program.

The news of the hiring was first reported Thursday by the Las Cruces Sun-News, which quoted an unnamed source.

Menzies will inherit a strong team, improved facilities and a recruiting class that includes Pittsburgh-area standout Herb Pope. The team will return six seniors and is fresh off the school's first NCAA tournament appearance since 1999.

Theus turned around the Aggies in just two years. He took over a program that won just six games the season before he was hired and led the Aggies to back-to-back winning seasons, including the Western Athletic Conference tournament title and the NCAA bid.

The energy from last season's successes is expected to continue for the Aggies, which have two high-profile road trips -- scheduled by Theus before he left -- to Duke and Louisville.

Menzies has coached at the college level for 14 years. Before his stint at Louisville, he spent a year at UNLV, where he helped the Rebels sign an incoming class that was rated one of the highest in the nation.

Menzies also was an assistant coach at USC for one year and at San Diego State for four seasons.

Menzies was a three-sport letterman at Hamilton High School in Los Angeles, Calif. He went on to earn a bachelor's degree from UCLA and a master's in education from Cal State Sacramento. He is married and has a son and a daughter.

Meanwhile, Louisville announced Friday that Walter McCarty, a former University of Kentucky star who played 10 years in the NBA, rejoined his mentor Rick Pitino as Louisville's assistant basketball coach, replacing Menzies.


Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press

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