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“Dick and Tony Bennett have elevated the men’s basketball program at Washington State to an unprecedented level of success,” Sterk said. “We will begin a national search for a coach immediately with the goal of finding someone with the integrity, experience and values that Dick and Tony brought to the program.”
He has been described as “a young Mike Krzyzewski” and has previously turned down offers from LSU, Marquette and Indiana.
Having just finished his third year at WSU, Bennett owns a 68-30 (.694) overall record with the Cougars. This season’s team compiled a 16-13 overall record (8-9 in the Pac-10) and reached the NIT, where the Cougars were eliminated in the first round. His previous two teams both made it to the NCAA tournament, including a Sweet 16 finish in 2007-08.
That team compiled a 26-9 overall mark and finished 11-7 in the Pac-10, good for third place. Bennett’s 2006-07 Cougars went 26-8 and finished second in the conference with a 13-5 record and made it to the second round of the NCAA tournament.
Prior to taking over the Cougars, he served as an assistant coach in the program from 2003-06 under his father.
Bennett was named the Associated Press college basketball coach of the year for the 2006-07 season.