America EastBasketballResignation

John Gallagher steps down as Hartford head coach

John Gallagher, who has been the head coach at Hartford since 2010, has resigned from his position effective immediately. Gallagher submitted his letter of resignation to University President Greg Woodward and also shared that letter with CBS’ Matt Norlander.

The letter cites a breach of contract surrounding player safety concerns that Gallagher states he has shared with the University on multiple occasions to no avail. Gallagher is harshly critical of the school’s leadership, noting that he has “witnessed the profound deterioration of this once-proud institution under the current administration” and that it has been “painful to watch.”

The University announced its plans to de-prioritize athletics in 2021, with the Board voting to move all programs from D-I down to D-III. The Hawks are competing as a D-I Independent this season before joining the D-III Commonwealth Coast Conference in 2023.

Gallagher told Norlander that he is not seeking out another coaching job for this season. Given the drop to D-III, it was speculated by some (including us here at CDB) that the 2022-23 season would be Gallagher’s last at Hartford. The timing of the resignation is not ideal,  but if even some of the allegations in Gallagher’s letter are true then it is a wonder he even stayed with the program for as along as he did.

During his twelve-year tenure with the program, Gallagher went 169-207 overall and went to the postseason three times. In 2021, just months before the vote to drop to D-III, the Hawks won the America East Tournament and earned their first-ever bid to the D-I NCAA Tournament.

The Hawks open their season on Tuesday, hosting in-state foe Sacred Heart.

UPDATE 11/8: Hartford has named assistant coach Tom Devitt as the interim head coach for 2022-23. Devitt has been on staff since 2013.

credit to Hartford Athletics for the image