ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Less than 48 hours since Kim Anderson had publicly announced he was being fired as the University of Missouri basketball coach, Mizzou Director of Athletics Jim Sterk said he hoped to name a new coach by the Final Four, April 1.
Kim Anderson’s record in three years at Mizzou is 26-67 since 2014. He was hired after winning a DII National Championship with the Central Missouri Mules.
Sterk joined KMOX’s Mike Kelly, Monday evening to explain the decision, which was expected after finishing last in the SEC for a third consecutive year.
Sterk says Anderson asked him why his decision to either retain or move on from him was ‘dragging on.’ So that’s when Sterk told him, he would not be returning for the 2017-18 season. Mizzou is guaranteed at least one more game this season, this Wednesday, in the first round of the SEC Tournament against Auburn at 9:30 p.m.
Sterk, who was just hired into his position this past August, will now have to sell his program the same way he was sold on it. He mentioned to Kelly the average annual salary of an SEC basketball coach is $2.4 million, Anderson’s contract was the lowest guaranteed salary in the conference, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
“We’re going to have to be competitive,” Sterk says. “And my thought is we have to go after the best person that we can get. Then we’ll look at salary.”
Sterk says he will be looking for a candidate that will ‘dominate’ in-state recruiting, and he has hired an outside firm to help find that person.
“We have the facilities, we have the institution, we have the support to be able to have a very special program here,” Sterk says. “I came here to win championships and that’s what I think we can do in basketball.”
Listen to the entire conversation between Sterk and Kelly, here: