UConn announces decision to fire Kevin Ollie “for just cause”

Connecticut head coach Kevin Ollie in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2016, in Hartford, Conn. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)

(WTNH)–UConn has released a statement saying it has begun the process of terminating head men’s basketball coach Kevin Ollie’s contract “for just cause.”

The school cited an NCAA investigation into the program, which was announced by the school back in January. The exact nature of the investigation has not yet been released.

Ollie has $10 million remaining on his contract, but the school would not have to pay that if he is fired for cause.

The school released this statement on Saturday:

The University of Connecticut has initiated disciplinary procedures to terminate the employment of Head Men’s Basketball Coach Kevin Ollie for just cause. The University will have no further comment on the matter until the completion of both the University’s disciplinary process and the ongoing NCAA investigation.

The Huskies lost in the first round of the American Athletic Conference tournament on Thursday, ending a 14-18 season, the program’s worst since 1986-87.

Since guiding UConn on a stunning national title run in 2014, Ollie’s teams have reached the NCAA Tournament just once. UConn has posted losing records in back-to-back years, the first time that has happened since ’86-87, Jim Calhoun’s first year as coach.

UConn athletic director David Benedict said the program will immediately begin to search for its next head coach.

“It is unfortunate that this decision became necessary,” Benedict said in a statement. “As with all of our programs, we hold men’s basketball to the highest standards. We will begin a national search immediately to identify our next head coach.”

Ollie will finish with a record of 127-79 at UConn.

The school released this statement from school president Susan Herbst:

“The men’s basketball program has a proud history and a tradition of excellence. Our goal, above all, is to ensure we have a program that UConn Nation can be proud of, including our students, alumni, fans, and all our committed supporters.”

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