Stanford hires Kyle Smith away from Washington State

Stanford hires Kyle Smith away from Washington State

According to multiple reports, Kyle Smith is leaving Washington State to take over as Stanford’s next head basketball coach.

The 54-year-old Smith led the Cougars to their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2008 this year. They beat Drake in the opening round before dropping a 67-56 decision to Iowa St. in the Round of 32 on Saturday.

Washington St. finished 25-10 straight up and 18-17 against the spread, going 14-6 in Pac-12 play.

Smith took the Cougars to back-to-back NIT appearances before breaking through this year. They advanced to the NIT Semifinals two years ago and won 22 games.

Smith compiled a 94-71 (57.0%) overall record in five seasons at Washington St., posting a 49-48 (50.5%) mark in Pac-12 play. He had zero losing seasons even though the Cougars had seven straight losing campaigns in a row before his arrival.

Smith was San Francisco’s head coach for three years before coming to Pullman. He won 20, 22 and 21 games for the Dons, going to the CBI Tournament twice. They finished as runner-up in the CBI in 2017-18.

Smith went 63-40 (61.2%) overall and 28-24 in WCC action during his three-year tenure at San Francisco.

Smith’s first head-coaching job came at Columbia, where he was for six seasons before taking over for the Dons. Smith went 101-82 (55.2%) overall and 37-47 (44.0%) in Ivy League play for the Lions.

Columbia went to the CBI quarterfinals in 2013-14 and won the CBI Tournament in his final year (2015-16).

At his three coaching stops, Smith has produced a 258-193 overall record (57.2%).

Smith was an assistant on Saint Mary’s staff under Randy Bennett from 2001-10. Prior to that, he was an assistant at San Diego from 1992-2000 and was at Air Force for one year (2000-01).

Stanford fired Jerod Haase earlier this month. He took the Cardinal to only one postseason appearance (the 2018 NIT) during a lackluster seven-year tenure.

Stanford finished 14-19 this season, limping to a 7-13 record in its final year in the Pac-12. The Cardinal is set to enter the ACC next season.

Stanford hasn’t been to the NCAA Tournament since 2014 when it advanced to the Sweet 16 before losing to Dayton in Memphis at FedEx Forum in the South Region semifinals.