Los Angeles Lakers assistant Eddie Jordan will interview today for the men’s coaching job at Rutgers University, his alma mater, following a basketball scandal that cost the former coach and athletic director their jobs, The Times of Trenton reported.
Jordan told the newspaper, which based its report of the job interview on unidentified people close to the basketball program, that he would be ideal for the position.
“The only college I would coach would be Rutgers, and I believe it makes complete sense for me to be the next Rutgers coach, or to at least be heavily considered,” Jordan told the newspaper. “I am involved with the Lakers and the playoff race, and all my interests are into this right now.”
Ten days after Mike Rice was fired by the New Brunswick, New Jersey-based school for physically and verbally abusing his players during practices, Jordan and Rutgers entered talks after University of Rhode Island coach Danny Hurley turned down an offer this week, Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO:US) said on its sports website, citing people it didn’t identify.
Rutgers spokesman Jason Baum said in an e-mail that he couldn’t confirm the Yahoo report.
Athletic Director Tim Pernetti resigned on April 5, two days after Rice was fired. Rice initially was suspended for three games and fined $50,000 in December. He was fired soon after video was aired nationally on ESPN of him throwing basketballs and shoving players while using gay slurs and vulgarities at practice from 2010 to 2012.
Jordan, who played for Rutgers from 1973 to 1977, began his coaching career as a Scarlet Knights volunteer assistant after retiring as a National Basketball Association player in 1984. Rutgers reached the Final Four of the National Collegiate Athletic Association tournament when Jordan was a junior in 1976.
The 58-year-old Jordan was an NBA head coach for nine seasons with the Sacramento Kings, Washington Wizards and Philadelphia 76ers, posting a 257-343 record.
A guard, he played seven NBA seasons, averaging 8.1 points and 3.8 assists per game, while playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers, New Jersey Nets, Lakers and Portland Trail Blazers.
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