Turgeon Officially Accepts Offer to Become New Maryland Hoops Coach

May 09, 2011 | WNST Staff

Texas A&M University head basketball coach Mark Turgeon accepted an offer to become the new basketball coach at the University of Maryland, the school announced Monday night.

Turgeon replaces Gary Williams, who retired last week after 22 seasons as the head coach in College Park.

Terms of Turgeon’s contract were not made immediately available. Turgeon had been making roughly $1.5 million per season in College Station according to multiple reports.

Turgeon’s agreement ended a four day search by Maryland Athletic  Director Kevin Anderson following Williams’ surprising decision to step aside. Sources had told WNST.net’s Glenn Clark and Drew Forrester Turgeon had received an offer Monday and had been leaning towards accepting the deal. That confirmation came early Monday night, and the deal was announced after Turgeon informed his players of his decision.

“We’re thrilled to bring Mark to the University, where I’m sure he will continue to build on the great legacy and success of Maryland Basketball,” said Anderson in a press release. “In Mark, we have brought one of the outstanding young coaches in the country, and one who has a proven record of achievement on and off the court. We couldn’t be more excited.”

“It was just too good an offer for me to pass on” said Turgeon in a statement. “The thing that made it the most difficult was the players. Those guys have done everything I’ve asked for four years and we’ve had a great ride. (Director of Athletics) Bill Byrne has been really good to me too. Those are the hardest parts of the whole thing. It’s been a tough day. I’ve been back and forth many times. I just felt like Maryland was a great opportunity for me and my family.”

“Maryland’s got a great basketball tradition. (These programs are) real similar. It’s a gut feeling. Both programs are great. I’m a blessed person to have the choice that I had to make today. They’re both great programs. The one thing I feel good about is I inherited a good team and I think I’m leaving my best team behind. That made the decision really hard, but I feel good about what I’m leaving behind for the next guy to continue what Billy (Gillispie) and I have started.”

Turgeon-a native of Topeka, Kansas-has been the head coach of the Aggies since 2007, posting a 97-40 record over those four seasons. TAMU has reached the NCAA Tournament in all four of Turgeon’s seasons but has never advanced past the first weekend of the Tournament.

Before coming to College Station, Turgeon split the previous nine seasons between Jacksonville State and Wichita State. He took the Shockers to one NCAA Tournament (and three NIT’s) during that stretch.

Turgeon (46) has a 249-158 overall record as a head coach. He won the Missouri Valley Conference Coach of the Year award in 2006 and was named Big 12 Coach of the Year in 2010.

Turgeon played college basketball at Kansas under Hall of Famer Larry Brown and was previously an assistant with the Jayhawks as well as Oregon and with the Philadelphia 76ers.

The Turgeon rumors began after Maryland is believed to have been turned down by Arizona’s Sean Miller, Notre Dame’s Mike Brey, Butler’s Brad Stevens, Pittsburgh’s Jamie Dixon and Villanova’s Jay Wright.

Turgeon will be introduced to the Baltimore and Washington, DC media on Wednesday at a noon press conference at Comcast Center’s Heritage Hall.

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