NCAA

VCU players react to former head coach Will Wade leaving for LSU

VCU players react to former head coach Will Wade leaving for LSU

BY TYLER BYRUM, @theTylerByrum

The coaching carousel in college basketball has already begun without even a national champion being named. Last night, VCU was one of the latest teams to fall victim to the frenzy.

Days after the Rams's season had ended with a 85-77 loss to Saint Mary's in the NCAA tournament, LSU named VCU's head coach, Will Wade to the same position for the upcoming 2017-18 season.

In what is becoming an awful trend in the college sports landscape, the current VCU players were not notified until after LSU had announced the addition of Wade. In fact some found out via Twitter and many of them were not pleased.

At 34-years-old, Wade is one of the youngest head coaches in college basketball and had spent a majority of his time with the VCU program. In his two seasons as head coach, the team went 51-20 (18-8 in Atlantic 10 play) making the Atlantic 10 championship game in both seasons as well as the NCAA Tournament. Years prior, he was an assistant with the Rams for four seasons, including the team's improbable First Four to Final Four run in 2011.

After a brief stint as the head coach of Chattanooga, Wade was called up to lead the Rams following Shaka Smart's departure to Texas in 2015. Last season he signed an eight-year contract with the Rams, which included a $1 million dollar buyout and also required the team to play a home-and-home series with whichever program he left for according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Per a release, the athletic program will immediately begin a national search for their next head coach.

MORE NCAA: Duke lost, but the internet won; introducing the Luke Kennard memes

Editor's Note: An earlier version of this article listed a tweet from JeQuan Lewis. That tweet was not in reference to Will Wade and happened before the announcement of his move. Since then that tweet had been removed from the piece.

Richmond Spiders lose leading scorer Blake Francis for 4-6 weeks

blake_francis_richmond_usat.jpg
USA TODAY Sports Images

Richmond Spiders lose leading scorer Blake Francis for 4-6 weeks

Richmond Spiders' Blake Francis will miss four to six weeks after fracturing his sternum, the team announced on Thursday.

The injury occurred at the end of the Spiders' contest against Saint Louis on Jan. 11. Francis fell to the floor to save a loose ball when opposing Bilikins dove onto a dogpile to recover the possession themselves. 

If Francis is out for the full six weeks, he would return during the final week of the regular season. It would give the guard a tuneup game before they play in the Atlantic 10 Tournament. 

The loss of Francis for the majority of the Atlantic 10 conference season cannot be overstated. A transfer from Wagner, Francis is the No. 2 guard in the Spiders lineup and putting out 17 points a game. Immediately he had an impact for the Spiders and was named a starter for his first game in Richmond. 

His scoring threat has allowed other stars Jacob Gilyard and Grant Golden to flourish. An aspect of the offense that was missing last year. 

At 13-4, the Spiders were still in NCAA Tournament consideration before the injury. They have one of the better records in the league and tough road victories at Rhode Island and Davidson to their credit. However, there is no wiggle room for the Spiders and they probably cannot afford another loss to anyone not named Dayton or VCU. 

Without Francis, they'll have to supplement the offense elsewhere if they want any chance to return to the big dance in March. 

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.

RELATED NCAA NEWS:

Virginia Tech head coach Justin Fuente takes himself out of running for Baylor job

fuente.jpg
USA Today Sports Images

Virginia Tech head coach Justin Fuente takes himself out of running for Baylor job

Virginia Tech fans can breathe a sigh of relief today, as head coach football coach Justin Fuente has decided to stay in Blacksburg, according to Andrea Adelson

Fuente had emerged as a top candidate to replace Matt Rhule at Baylor, but he took himself out of the running and will look to improve on a strong close to the 2019 season for the Hokies. 

Fuente just finished replacing a number of defensive assistants. He hired a new cornerbacks coach Tuesday and promoted Justin Hamilton to defensive coordinator after Bud Foster retired. 

While a bad loss to Virginia at the end of the regular season and a heartbreaking loss in the bowl game to Kentucky could paint the season as a failure, finishing 8-5 after early-season struggles is a victory in and of itself.

Heading into next season, Virginia Tech fans have to feel good about the state of their team. The head coach is back and they seemed to find a rising star at quarterback in Hendon Hooker. 

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.

RELATED NCAA NEWS: