Matta out at Ohio State

Matta out at Ohio State

Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith announced on Monday afternoon that Thad Matta will no longer be the Buckeyes' men's basketball coach.

Matta, a Hoopeston native, coached Ohio State for 13 seasons and leaves as the program's all-time leader in wins (337) and games coached (460) in Ohio State history.

The 49-year-old Matta, who previously was the head coach at Xavier and Butler prior to his stint at Ohio State starting in 2005,  guided the Buckeyes to at least 20 wins in 12 consecutive seasons from 2005 to 2016, a program record.

Smith said after Ohio State ended the 2016-17 season with a 17-15 record, Matta's future was safe, but some of the offseason developments, like the departure of JaQuan Lyle and questions about Matta's health issues, led Smith to his decision.

"We've dealt with some major negativity in terms of recruitment, my future, all of those things," Matta said. "We were battling some things we couldn't overcome. As I told Gene, 'Hey, timing is never good for a coaching change.' The July period is a huge deal. I'm perfectly fine with it."

Matta will play a role in helping Ohio State find its new coach, Smith said.

"Thad has agreed to help in the search," Smith said. "We've talked about all that. It wasn't a singular conversation."

Whoever the Buckeyes hire, it'll mark the third new coach in the Big Ten once play starts in the 2017-18 season, joining Brad Underwood at Illinois and Archie Miller at Indiana.

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