Report: Howland to be fired Sunday

Multiple reports indicate that UCLA could fire head coach Ben Howland as soon as Sunday.

Recruiting guru Alex Kline first reported the news, and’s Adam Zagoria followed up with more details.

Yahoo! Sports reported Saturday evening that Howland had been notified of his firing, with an official announcement to come within the next 48 hours.

“Contrary to multiple media reports this evening, UCLA has not fired men’s basketball coach Ben Howland,” the school said in a statement.

According to Zagoria, UCLA is looking at Florida’s Billy Donovan, Butler’s Brad Stevens, VCU’s Shaka Smart, Villanova’s Jay Wright and North Carolina State’s Mark Gottfried. Kline’s source said Smart is the No. 1 target, and that Kyle Anderson and Shabazz Muhammad are both headed for the NBA.

Sources also said the Bruins will try and retain assistant Korey McCray in order to try and keep freshmen Tony Parker and Jordan Adams from transferring. Although Parker said this weekend that he will discuss his future with his parents, Adams had told reporters two weeks ago that he intends on staying.

UCLA’s season ended Friday in an 83-63 loss to Minnesota in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

Asked after the game if Howland’s future would affect his decision, Parker responded vaguely: “It is what it is. We still have to play basketball. I still have a long summer.”

This post has been updated as news developed.

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  • I will leave this blog forever if Donovan is dumb enough to take this job.

    • WingsHD

      I won’t even get started if he is dumb enough to take the job.

    • Guest

      You must have thought that Donovan was looking at the SuC job! Cantu is going to take a step up by applying for the CSUN job!

      • Or a step down and replace Big Bem

  • Mark

    Please, please, please let it be true…

  • Mark

    Not sure about Billy Donovan. That would be like Pete Carroll coaching Ucla’s football team.

  • Marc

    The NCAA has become a joke with regards to this elbow flagrant one in the tourney.

    Total BS! Wichita State was just called for one against Gonzaga; not EVEN a swinging elbow. The Gonzaga player Divaked on the play and got the call.

    BTW – I said it b4, and I’ll say it again. How about this Wichita State coach for UCLA? I mean, dang!

  • Mark

    By the way, Jack, why are you piggy-backing off other reporters’ work? It’s not like you’re Ucla’s beat writer or anything. Where are your sources?

    • Bru-Crew_UCLA

      its called passing information. He clearly stated others are reporting this info. R U gonna rip Jim Hill, CBS Sports, Fox Sports and ESPN for reporting the same thing?
      Attack Jack Wang for not repeating the latest rumors / news about Howland’s tenure. Did U forget it’s about those 4 letters U.C.L.A.? This new coach has to be the coach who returns UCLA back to the top of college BB . No other BB program west of the Mississippi garners the attention of the nation like UCLA. Calm down

  • chris lepe

    Kyle anderson to the nba? Kid is a good rebounder, his passes are circus passes, he has to work on his shot 41% field goals 21% from 3 point line Dude look @ your stats from the last three games

    • Contrary to Wang’s summary, Zagoria writes in the linked post that Anderson is undecided about his future.

  • chris lepe

    Kyle scoring last 6 games. Work on your shot & comeback to schools with those numbers 2nd round or worst undrafted minnesota game 2-11 6 Pts oregon 4-10 11pts arizona 5-11 10 pts arizona st 2-7 5pts washington 2-6 4 Pts washington st 2-7 4 pts

  • guest

    worst fear came true. he decided to risk the NBA rather than the unknown. does he want to be placed in a situation where it’s a complete rebuilding project? under Howland, he’s already spent a year in the system and is ready to just improve his game. under a new coach, he’s starting over. new principles. new plays. new assistants. new everything. for someone with pro aspirations and is used to be constantly going up, uncertainty is the worst situation.

  • Butch

    What do you think about the possibility of Ernie Kent taking over at UCLA?

    • Mark

      there’s no possibility and he’s not a candidate

  • Thanks Ben. Donovan would ensure a great team for a long time.

  • disqus_FAjVMSy51D


  • Having a cheating Trojan sabotage the program with his baby bad Kobe didn’t help.

  • Mark

    I hate it when national media types weigh in on our situation and act like Howland is getting the shaft. People who follow the program closely know Howland has run the team into the ground with his overbearing style and the revolving door of players. I’m talking about you, Greg, Kenny and Charles!

  • 92104bruinfan

    First off, big kudos and thanks to BH for last 10 years even if the last few years didn’t go as well as we all would have liked. I was a supporter of BH for a while even as recent as a couple of days ago, but after the tourney loss & some reflection, it is time for a change. NCAA Mens’ CBB is ultimately a business and you have to put butts in the seats and there was just way too much roster turnover here compared to other programs IMO, his style would still work in other conferences such as the A10 or Big East. It just reached a shelf life here. Best wishes to him in the future.

    Shaka Smart would seem to be the most ideal candidate out there as it appears he has taken the VCU program as far as it can go the last couple of seasons. His uptempo style would likely sell seats in Pauley. Brad Stevens and Mark Few are in great situations but similar to Shaka Smart, there are limits to what they are able to do at their respective schools. All three have de facto lifetime contracts where they are and their fan bases love them. However, there are some phone calls you take & at least listen. The UCLA basketball job is one of them.

    Go Bruins!

  • Marc

    Is Gregg Marshall, head coach of the Wichita State Shockers on the list?

    And if not, why?

    Two time Missouri Valley Conference coach of the year 2012, 2013.

    Career .683 winning percentage. Currently has team in Sweet Sixteen.

    Dude has charisma. UCLA should call him.

  • Mark

    I guess it’s not happening today, at least not publicly.

    • maze949

      Wrong again, Mark.

      • Mark

        So be it, but I get the last laugh. I’ve been calling for this outcome for months while the rest of you were inexplicably holding on to hope for Howland (though I can’t imagine why).

        • (It might have had something to do with wanting the team to succeed and not fail.)

  • Mark

    I have to say that the reporting on this “story” is really shoddy. First, 2 guys I’ve never heard of (as far as covering Ucla) purport that they have some inside information And that something is imminent. Well, they both gone eerily silent the past 24 hours. If something is afoot, shouldn’t somebody know something? Things like, Howland and Guerrero are meeting Monday at 9 am, and a press conference is being scheduled for Monday afternoon. Or that Guerrero is trying to call Howland, but Howland won’t pick up. Or that Ucla is delaying the announcement until a special team meeting takes place.

    Additionally, all the other so-called “reporters” seem to be just reporting others’ work. Is anyone doing any real reporting on Howland’s future?

    • Mark

      Well it finally happened but I stand by what I wrote above.