Willard joins Pitino on Louisville staff

The Associated PressJune 11, 2009 

Ralph Willard was appointed associate head men's basketball coach at Louisville on Wednesday after resigning as Holy Cross head coach, both universities announced Wednesday.

"I've been pursuing Ralph for the last 10 years," Louisville coach Rick Pitino said in a statement. "I can't tell you how excited we are that he has joined our staff and we are back together again. Ralph is truly one of the best minds in our game."

In 10 seasons at Holy Cross, Willard won 62 percent of his games and had a 192-117 record.

Willard previously coached as an assistant on Pitino's staff with the NBA's New York Knicks and at Kentucky.


Alabama closes Smith investigation: Alabama Attorney General Troy King has closed the investigation into former Alabama star Andre Smith's alleged dealings with a sports agent.

King said Wednesday the investigation found no probable cause to believe anyone violated Alabama's sports agents law. Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban suspended the All-American left tackle days before the Tide's Sugar Bowl against Utah amid allegations that Smith or a person representing him had improper contact with a sports agent.

The Alabama Uniform Athlete Agents Act requires sports agents to register in Alabama and prohibits them from giving anything of value directly or indirectly to a student athlete. The law also requires sports agents to notify university officials if a contract has been made with an athlete.


Brunner, Rynarzewska honored: Former Central Michigan quarterback Brian Brunner and former Florida State tennis player Anna Rynarzewska are the first recipients of the NCAA's Jim McKay Scholarships.

The scholarships are named for the longtime sportscaster who died last year at 87. The awards will go each year to one male and one female athlete who plan postgraduate studies in communications.

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