Rob Issa, FISM News
As a coach on the sidelines, Patrick Ewing couldn’t match the success he had on the court.
The Hall of Fame center known as the greatest Hoyas basketball player ever was fired Thursday after six losing seasons as head coach at Georgetown.
Ewing, who led the school to an NCAA championship as a player in 1984, was 75-109 as head coach.
“Patrick Ewing is the heart of Georgetown basketball,” Georgetown president John J. DeGioia said in a statement.
I am deeply grateful to Coach Ewing for his vision, his determination, and for all that he has enabled Georgetown to achieve. Over these past six years, he was tireless in his dedication to his team and the young men he coached and we will forever be grateful to Patrick for his courage and his leadership in our Georgetown community.
Georgetown’s decision didn’t come as a surprise considering the basketball team’s struggles under Ewing.
“I wish the program nothing but success. I will always be a Hoya,” Ewing said.
Ewing’s final game as coach was on the same court where he starred in the NBA for the New York Knicks. Georgetown lost 80-48 to Villanova on Wednesday night in the first round of the Big East Tournament at Madison Square Garden.
Georgetown went 7-25 this season, including 2-18 in regular-season conference play, a schedule capped by a 40-point loss to Creighton. Ewing presided over a 29-game Big East losing streak that began in March 2021 and ended this January, the most consecutive defeats in league history.
Ewing’s teams won just 13 games over the last two years and made the NCAA Tournament just once in his tenure. When the 7-foot Ewing played for Georgetown, he helped the program become one of the most successful in the nation under the late coach John Thompson Jr.
The Hoyas were 121-23 in Ewing’s four seasons as a player. Ewing started 8-0 as a coach before things unraveled.
“My future is my future,” Ewing said after a loss earlier in the season. “You know, a friend of mine sent me a quote today: ‘It’s not how many times you get knocked down; it’s how many times you get up.’ We got knocked down, so all we’re going to do is keep on getting up.”
KANSAS COACH HOSPITALIZED
Kansas coach Bill Self will miss the Big 12 Tournament after going to the emergency room Wednesday night for what doctors called “a standard procedure,” and it’s uncertain whether he will be back for the NCAA Tournament.
Dr. Steve Stites, the chief medical officer at the University of Kansas Health System, said Self did not have a heart attack without explaining further details. He said Self is expected to make a full recovery. It’s uncertain whether he will be back for the NCAA Tournament.
“We didn’t really let the guys know until this morning because nothing was concrete [about] what was going on,” said Kansas assistant Norm Roberts after coaching the No. 3 Jayhawks to a 78-61 victory over West Virginia in the quarterfinal round.
“Coach is doing good,” Roberts added. “I talked to him on the phone (after the game). He’s doing well. He already wants to watch film and all of that. He’s doing well. He’s doing better.”
The defending national champion Jayhawks are aiming for another Big 12 Tournament championship. They are currently ranked No. 3 in the Associated Press poll and are projected to be a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.