In addition to coaching at Xavier, Mack played at and graduated from the school and has spent most of his life in the Cincinnati area. He is coming off of what was one of Xavier’s most successful seasons in program history, winning 29 games and a Big East outright title, but fell short in the NCAA Tournament.
This hiring is a major win for Louisville, pulling Mack not only from an up-and-coming Big East power but also from a program and city and that he has been associated with for so long. The cost for the school was immense: Mack’s deal is reportedly for seven years and worth about $4 million per.
The Louisville job officially opened last week when it was announced that acting head coach David Padgett would not be retained. Though most have speculated that the job has been open since Rick Pitino’s firing before the season started. Padgett led the Cardinals to the NIT in his lone season at the helm.
For Mack, the Louisville is one that is also familiar. His wife grew up there and she has family in the area.
With the Pittsburgh and Louisville vacancies both being filled on Tuesday, the Xavier job will now be the best available. Once a mid-major power, the Musketeers emerged as a Big East force under Mack and the school will look to hire the best person to keep that momentum going.
Athletic director Greg Christopher had this to say in a statement on Tuesday: “I want to thank Chris Mack for his exceptional work with the Xavier basketball program over the last 14 years… We wish Chris the best of luck as he attacks a new challenge.”