SMU hires Jankovich as hoops coach-in-waiting
DALLAS—Illinois State's Tim Jankovich has been hired as the presumed head coach-in-waiting under new SMU coach Larry Brown.
Jankovich's title at SMU will be associate head coach, according to the school's announcement of his hiring Thursday.
The Mustangs hired Brown last week. The 71-year-old Hall of Fame coach is coaching on the college level for the first time since leading Kansas to the 1988 national championship.
Illinois State went 105-64 with four NIT appearances over the past five seasons under Jankovich. Previously, he spent five years as an assistant for Bill Self at two schools.
"Tim was highly recommended by Kansas coach Bill Self, and I am very excited to have him at SMU," Brown said in a statement released by SMU. "The number and quality of coaches interested in coming to SMU has been tremendous; and to get someone with his experience and success as a head coach is invaluable."
Jankovich's first job as a head coach was at North Texas in 1993-97, where he led the Mean Green from a 5-21 record the season before his arrival to a 14-15 mark in his first season.
Illinois State won at least 20 games four times under Jankovich, who before that was an assistant for Self at Illinois (one seasons) and Kansas (four seasons). Self was on the SMU campus for Brown's formal introduction Monday.
Jankovich has also been assistant coach on the staffs of Eddie Sutton, Jack Hartman, Lon Kruger, Boyd Grant, Gene Iba, Bob Weltlich and Kevin Stallings.
Most of Illinois State's team is returning next season. Jankovich and athletic director Gary Friedman told the players of the coach's departure in a meeting Thursday.
Friedman will lead the search for a new coach at Illinois State.