Georgia State’s Rob Lanier leaving for SMU job

SMU announced on Saturday the hiring of Rob Lanier as its new head men’s basketball coach. Lanier has been at Georgia State for the last three seasons, leading the Panthers to the NCAA Tournament in 2022.

“I couldn’t be more honored to lead the program on the Hilltop,” said Lanier. “SMU’s location in the heart of Dallas, Texas, the beautiful campus, stellar academic reputation and overall commitment to excellence make it the perfect fit for me and my family. I’m excited to get to work and to take this program to the next level.”

Lanier’s short tenure at GSU was quite successful, winning a share of the Sun Belt title last year and then claiming the Sun Belt Tournament crown this season to get back to the Big Dance.

He arrived at Georgia State in 2019 after spending the previous eight seasons Rick Barnes‘ associate head coach – four at Texas and five at Tennessee. He served as the head coach at Siena in his native New York from 2001-05 and has also been an assistant at Florida, Virginia, Rutgers, St. Bonaventure (his alma mater) and Niagara.

“We are excited to welcome Rob Lanier and his family to Dallas as the Head Basketball Coach at SMU,” said AD Rick Hart. “Rob is an excellent coach and has been mentored by some of the game’s best in Rick Barnes and Billy Donovan. He and his staff will build upon the success our program has experienced under Coach Brown and Coach Jankovich. As importantly, his character, integrity, and commitment to developing our student-athletes as both players and people align with our mission of Shaping Champions. Our conversations with individuals in the basketball community only reinforced our belief that Rob Lanier is the right leader for SMU basketball.”

Former head coach Tim Jankovich retired earlier this month after six seasons at the helm. The Mustangs last played in the NCAA Tournament in 2017, Jankovich’s first full season as head coach. They won 30 games that season but struggled in the following years, getting back to the NIT in each of the last two years but not the NCAAs.

 

credit to SMU Athletics for the image

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