Mark Fox was fired by Georgia on Saturday after nine seasons as head coach.
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Fox arrived in Athens in 2009 after a successful five-year run at Nevada. He only had four 20-win seasons with the Bulldogs and reached two NCAA Tournaments. They won 18 games this year, including an SEC Tournament quarterfinal vs. Missouri but will miss the tournament for the third straight season.
With Fox out, who might Georgia hire? Here are five potential candidates.
Current Position: N/A
Given the number of openings, it'd be stunning if Tom Crean is not back in college basketball within a few weeks.
Pete Thamel reported on Thursday that Crean is the "biggest buzz" for a program likely to make a "safe hire of a veteran coach." Though Crean has never coached south of Kentucky (assistant, 1990-94), he's recruited nearly every corner of the country and has plenty of gas left in the tank.
Current Position: Head Coach — Charleston
Earl Grant is quickly becoming one of the most sought-after coaches in the country. Whether he leaves Charleston this year, in 2019 or later, the first question is, can he do better than Georgia?
Grant delivered the Cougars' first tourney berth since 1999 and with the exception of three years at Wichita State (three of six years under Gregg Marshall at Winthrop and Wichita State) has spent his entire life and career in the southeast.
Current Position: Head Coach — Murray State
The 39-year-old has zero high-major experience but is a rising star with strong relationships in the region. With only one good season under his belt (26-5 this year, including 16-2 in the OVC and an NCAA Tournament berth) this would be a reach and far from a sexy hire, though one Georgia might be willing to roll the dice on.
Current Position: Head Coach – Middle Tennessee
After 10 jobs at eight programs over 20 years, Kermit Davis arrived in Murfreesboro in 2002 and hasn't left, building the Blue Raiders into a mid-major power.
There's no reason to believe Davis will ever leave but the 56-year-old is a known commodity with high-major experience who's worked in the SEC (assistant, LSU, 1997-2002) and recruited around the southeast for the last two decades.
Current Position: Head Coach – Oklahoma City Thunder
Here's your wild card.
OK, fine, here's your "why in the hell would Billy Donovan want the Georgia job?" wild card.
If Donovan wants to return to college, he can do way better than Georgia. He'd likely a blue-blood candidate if one those coaches were to leave. Nonetheless, he spent 15 years at Florida with current Georgia athletics director Greg McGarity, therefore is there any chance McGarity calls his former coach with a massive offer?
Crazier things have happened.