Missouri basketball coach Frank Haith officially announced the hiring of former Drake coach Mark Phelps as an assistant Tuesday.
Phelps, a graduate of Old Dominion, replaces Rick Carter, who recently left to take a job at Xavier. Phelps is the seventh assistant Haith has hired since he took the MU job in April 2011. Haith hired Carter away from Western Michigan last summer when Ryan Miller left to become associate head coach at Auburn after spending less than three months on the staff.
“We are all so excited to welcome Mark into our basketball family,” Haith said in a statement released by MU. “I’ve known Mark for a number of years and have always admired his approach to the game of basketball. He is tireless with his preparation and gets the most out of his players because he is there putting in the work with them. When we had this opening become available Mark was my first call and it speaks well of Mizzou that we were able to recruit him away from some other great programs.”
Phelps, 47, posted a 77-86 in five seasons at Drake. His best year at the school came in 2011-12, when he led the Bulldogs to an 18-16 overall record and 9-9 record in the Missouri Valley Conference, which were both the best marks of his tenure.
He followed that up with a 15-17 season — which included a 7-11 league mark for the fourth time in five years — and was fired in March. Phelps, who spent 12 years as an assistant at North Carolina State and Arizona State, posted a 148-53 record at a pair of Virginia high schools from 1990-96.
“I’m extremely honored to have the opportunity to join Coach Haith’s staff here at Missouri and I want to thank Coach Haith, Mike Alden and the administration for giving me this opportunity to continue my coaching career as a Tiger,” Phelps said in the statement. ”It goes without saying, but I have a great deal of respect for Coach Haith and how he runs his program. He has distinguished himself as one of the elite coaches throughout his climb in our profession. We saw the fantastic job he did at Miami when we were at N.C. State and he has brought that same winning pedigree here to Mizzou.”
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