MANHATTAN, Kan. Athletics director Tim Weiser announced Thursday afternoon that Bob Huggins has resigned as head men’s basketball coach at Kansas State to become head coach at West Virginia.
“This is a tough day for the entire K-State nation,” Weiser said. “Bob Huggins did a terrific job during his short tenure to put Kansas State back on the basketball map and we appreciate his efforts. It’s a shame that he has decided not to finish the job he started here. That being said, we all understand the allure of returning home. That understanding, however, does little to lessen the disappointment we all feel concerning Bob’s decision.”
Weiser said that a search for Huggins’ replacement would begin immediately.
“We’re going to pick up the pieces and keep moving forward,” Weiser added. “Kansas State has a tradition of success in men’s basketball and we will work diligently to find the right individual to lead our program.”
Huggins was named the 21st men’s basketball coach at Kansas State on March 23, 2006. He went on to lead the Wildcats to a 23-12 (.657) record during the 2006-07 season, including a 10-6 mark in and a fourth-place finish in the Big 12.
K-State’s 23 wins under Huggins were its most wins since tallying 25 during the 1987-88 season, while the 21 wins prior to the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship were the most in the regular season since the 1981-82 squad also collected 21 en route to the advancing to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats also posted 10 conference wins for the first time in the Big 12 era and for the first time since the Mitch Richmond-led Cats earned 11 Big Eight wins in 1987-88.
The 2006-07 season also saw Kansas State break an eight-year postseason drought with its invitation to the MasterCard NIT on March 11 as Huggins became just the second first-year head coach in school history to lead the Wildcats into the postseason. The berth pushed Huggins’ run of consecutive postseason appearances to 18 (1988-89 at Akron; 1989-2005 at Cincinnati; 2007 at Kansas State). Huggins then helped the Wildcats earn their first postseason win in nearly 13 years and first since 1994 as K-State defeated Vermont, 59-57, in the first round of the NIT before falling to DePaul, 70-65, in the second round.
Huggins will enter the 2007-08 season, his 26th as a head coach, with a 590-211 overall record, which ranks as the sixth-highest among active NCAA Division I coaches.