With the end of the college basketball season approaching for Notre Dame, a lot of discussion is taking place on the internet about whether now is the right time for Mike Brey to ride off into the sunset, and for the university to hire someone new. Personally, I’m not sure that I agree with that. Regardless, I have thought a lot about whom the eventual successor to Brey will be. If the school was in the position of hiring a new men’s basketball coach, who would you want it to be?
In recent years, Brey has used assistant coaching positions to give opportunities to guys that played for him. My guess is that he would like nothing more than for one of his former players to take over after he retires. While, Jack Swarbrick certainly should not hire someone for that reason alone, I think, out of respect for everything Brey has done for this program, a couple of such people should be given due consideration, in addition to external candidates. Below is a few people I would consider. I could have easily made this list twice as long, but tried to be brief.
Ryan Humphrey – Assistant Coach, Notre Dame
Humphrey has been an assistant here at ND since the 2016-17 season and has been credited with tutelage of big men including Bonzie Colson and John Mooney. It seems that Mike Brey is grooming Humphrey to one day be a head coach, whether it be here or elsewhere.
Chris Quinn – Assistant Coach/Director of Player Development, Miami Heat
If you follow the NBA, you’ve probably heard the phrase "Heat culture" repeated ad nauseam. Is it real? Could Quinn bring some of it to South Bend? Who knows? But there is a recent precedent for a successful transition from Heat assistant coach to college head coach with Juwan Howard taking over at Michigan.
Martin Inglesby – Head Coach, Delaware
So far, Inglesby is the only of Mike Brey’s assistants to hold a Division I head coaching job. While Delaware hasn’t quite been a powerhouse in the CAA, Inglesby has turned the program around, going from 13-20 in year one to 22-11 in year four before dipping down to 7-8 in a pandemic-shortened season. This is a familiar path, as Brey was also the head coach at Delaware before coming to Notre Dame.
Porter Moser – Head Coach, Loyola Chicago
The work Moser has done at Loyola is incredible. He reached the Final 4 in 2018 and has won the Missouri Valley again this year. The team is returning to the tournament with a chance at a single-digit seed. It’s a virtual lock at this point that Moser will have a bigger job soon, if he wants one. The question with him is whether bigger programs than ND will be calling as well.
Anthony Grant – Head Coach, Dayton
Before the pandemic struck, Grant’s Dayton Flyers were set to be a one-seed in the NCAA Tournament with a real chance of winning it all. He had a prior stint at Alabama that failed to live up to expectations, resulting in his firing. Perhaps the success he’s had at Dayton merits another chance at a power conference job.
Micah Shrewsberry – Associate Head Coach, Purdue
Shrewsberry isn’t a big name, but he has a strong resume. His experience coaching all around the state of Indiana, from IU-South Bend to Butler and Purdue, could be useful in recruiting locally. Shrewsberry has worked under two very accomplished coaches in Brad Stevens and Matt Painter. He’s even been an NBA assistant coach under Stevens on the Boston Celtics.
Were these ideas any good? Did I leave off someone better? I’d love to hear your thoughts.