March 30, 2018

Aaron McKie will take over for Fran Dunphy as Temple coach, but not for another year

Temple College Basketball
033018_Dunphy_usat Derik Hamilton/USA TODAY Sports

Temple Owls head coach Fran Dunphy will reportedly step down after next season.

According to multiple reports, Fran Dunphy will be stepping down as the head coach of Temple University's men's basketball team. But not before one last season at the helm.

Dunphy, who took over for Philly hoops legend John Chaney in 2006, will reportedly step down at the conclusion of the 2018-19 season and will be replaced by assistant coach and former Sixers guard Aaron McKie.

The Owls (17-16 this season) made the NCAA Tournament seven times under Dunphy, but have just two wins to show for it and have never made it out of the first round. Earlier this month, they were bounced by Penn State in the opening round of the NIT earlier this month, a year after failing to make the postseason at all. 

And that lack of postseason success – especially when compared to the success of a certain smaller school out on the Main Line – likely contributed to Dunphy's eventual demise. 

Dunphy is 247-152 at Temple and twice finished first in the Atlantic 10. He won the AAC championship in 2015-16 when the Owls went 14-4. Dunphy won 10 Ivy League championships, three Big 5 city series titles and went 310-163 in 17 seasons at Penn.

Dunphy's connection to Philadelphia basketball stretches back more than 40 years. He started at La Salle where he was a co-captain and helped the Explorers to a 23-1 record in 1969 under coach Tom Gola.

The big knock on Dunphy is his lack of success in the NCAA tournament. The Owls won only two games in the tournament under Dunphy, and the Quakers, out of the Ivy League, had one win in his 10 trips to the tournament.  [usatoday.com]

McKie, 45, played under Chaney at Temple and was the Atlantic 10 Player of the Year in 1993 when he led the Owls to the Elite 8. He also spent the majority of his 13-year NBA career with the Sixers, where he was named Sixth Man of the Year in 2001. 

Before joining the Dunphy's staff in 2014, the Philadelphia native and Simon Gratz alum spent six seasons as a Sixers assistant, serving under the likes of Maurice Cheeks, Tony DiLeo, Eddie Jordan, and Doug Collins. 

Soon, McKie will get his first shot at head coaching after nearly a decade as an assistant. And given that Temple hasn't advanced past the first weekend of the NCAA Tournament since 2001 – and hasn't made a Final Four since the 1950s – there will be plenty of pressure on the new Owls coach.

Of course, he's got another year before he has to worry about that... 


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