Campus Corner

Frank Haith says Tigers would be winning if he were still Missouri’s coach

Former Missouri coach Frank Haith, now the head coach at Tulsa, told USA Today that “he was confident he would have the personnel to win 20-plus games this season at Missouri and even more the following season.”
Former Missouri coach Frank Haith, now the head coach at Tulsa, told USA Today that “he was confident he would have the personnel to win 20-plus games this season at Missouri and even more the following season.” The Associated Press

Former Missouri coach Frank Haith told USA Today that “he was confident he would have the personnel to win 20-plus games this season at Missouri and even more the following season.”

Those remarks seem like a shot across the bow at his former employer, especially with the Tigers, 7-17 overall and 1-10 in conference, languishing in last place in the SEC.

Missouri’s losing streak reached 10 games, the longest since the 1966-67 season, with a 65-60 loss Tuesday at South Carolina — which is tied for 12th place in the SEC, two games ahead of MU.

Haith, who left the Tigers for Tulsa in April, has the Golden Hurricane atop the American Athletic Conference standings.

Tulsa is 17-6 overall and 10-1 in conference play, a half-game ahead of SMU for first place.

Haith went 76-28 in three seasons at Missouri, including 30 wins in 2011-12, the second-most in program history.

The Tigers, who won 23 games each of the next two seasons, reached the NCAA Tournament in Haith’s first two seasons, losing in the first round, and reached the second round of the NIT last season.

Missouri lost its three leading scorers — Jabari Brown, Jordan Clarkson and Earnest Ross — off last season’s team.

Under Haith, the 2014-15 squad was set to include Zach Price, who Haith dismissed amidst a series of arrests shortly before bolting for Tulsa, along with Cam Biedscheid and Torren Jones.

Biedscheid was expected to help replace much of that lost scoring before he left the program Sept. 30 and Jones was expected to provide athleticism and a rebounding presence inside before he was dismissed in August.

Instead, first-year coach Kim Anderson has fielded a team composed predominantly of freshmen and sophomores.

The Tigers’ only returning players entering 2014-15 all averaged below six points per game — forward Johnathan Williams III (5.8), forward Ryan Rosburg (4.8), point guard Wes Clark (4.1) and forward Keanau Post (1.5).

On Thursday, Anderson said at a news conference:  "I congratulate him on the job he's done at Tulsa."

When asked more about Haith's comment at a news conference, Anderson added, "I think that's a hypothetical statement. He's not here anymore. He went to Tulsa."

To reach Tod Palmer, call 816-234-4389 or send email to tpalmer@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter: @todpalmer.

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