Brad Choat (@choatsnews)

TULSA, Okla. (KMOX) – Tulsa made it official at an afternoon news conference.

The university has hired basketball coach Frank Haith away from Missouri.

Haith says he met with Missouri players yesterday before he flew to Tulsa for an interview, because he didn’t want them to learn about it on the Internet.

He says it wasn’t an easy choice to leave Mizzou.

“It was really tough for me to leave Missouri,” Haith says. “It had to take a place like this for me to leave because I had a great experience there. My wife, my daughter, my son love Columbia, and the fans were really, really good to me.”

Haith says he’s leaving Columbia with nothing but good things to say about his time spent there.

But, he’s excited about the challenge of guiding Tulsa players into a new conference next season, a conference that includes national champion Connecticut.

“They won because they played well together, and that’s a huge step in the right direction in terms of what we can do together, ” he says.

There’s no word yet from Mizzou officials about their search for a coach to replace Haith.

(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)




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