Steve Hawkins out after 17 seasons as head coach at Western Michigan

Western Michigan announced Wednesday evening that the contract of longtime head basketball coach Steve Hawkins would not be renewed, ending his 20-year tenure (17 as head coach) with the program.

Hawkins went 291-262 overall with the Mustangs, but has finished at or below .500 in four of the last five seasons. He first arrived in Kalamazoo in 2000, working as an assistant under Robert McCullum for three seasons before taking over the reigns in what was his first D-I head coaching job. He previously went 137-111 in nine seasons at D-II Quincy (IL).

So what’s next for Broncos’ fans? Here are a few names that make sense: WMU associate head coach Clayton Bates, Michigan State assistants Dane Fife or Dwayne Stephens (both could be holding out for something bigger), Northwest Missouri State head coach Ben McCollum (D-II champ and NABC COY) and VCU assistant (and Michigan-native) Brent Scott.

If they want to go really young – how about HS coach and WMU legend David Kool? Former Mr. Basketball out of Grand Rapids, Kool set program and MAC records playing for Hawkins from 2006-10. He would only be 33 at the start of next season, but he did spend a couple years as an assistant at his alma mater before becoming a high school coach in 2013.


credit to Jared Wickerham/Getty Images for the photo