Seton Hall hires Shaheen Holloway: Tournament star returns to alma mater after historic run with Saint Peter’s

Legendary Seton Hall player and NCAA Tournament coaching star Shaheen Holloway is returning to his alma mater to fill the program’s head coaching vacancy, the university announced Wednesday. Holloway’s historic Elite Eight run with Saint Peter’s marked the first time in tournament history that a No. 15 seed advanced that far in the bracket. The Peacocks also became the first team in tournament history to win twice as a double-digit underdog.

Holloway’s deal will be for six years, according to CBS Sports’ Matt Norlander. An introductory press conference has been scheduled for Thursday.

Just 45 years old, Holloway played for the Pirates in the late 1990s and was a three-time All-Big East performer. Once a star recruit and McDonald’s All-American as a high school player, he chose Seton Hall over Kansas, Duke and Syracuse and became the face of the program, where he averaged 13.7 points and 5.9 assists per game over his four-year career.

“I am incredibly excited to welcome Shaheen Holloway and his family home to Seton Hall,” said athletic director Bryan Felt in a statement. “Shaheen is a winner in every sense of the word, and he is not only an incredible coach, but also an incredible educator of young men. He works tirelessly to put his student-athletes in a position to succeed, and he makes them believe that they can achieve anything with hard work and determination. That is evidenced by his historic NCAA Tournament run this month.”

In just four years as a head coach at the college level, Holloway built Saint Peter’s from a 10-22 team in Year 1 to a program that enjoyed three consecutive winning seasons. With a 64-53 overall record, he led the school to its first of three NCAA Tournament wins and leaves behind a legacy as the head coach of one of college basketball’s best Cinderella stories in March Madness.

At Seton Hall, Holloway will take the reins from long-time coach Kevin Willard, who earlier this month left his position to take the same job at Maryland. Willard was 225-161 with the Pirates since taking over the program in 2010, but he left on a sour note after a 27-point first-round loss to TCU in the NCAA Tournament — the program’s third-worst loss in history on the NCAA Tournament stage.

“Life has a way of coming full circle,” said Holloway. “This is certainly a full circle moment for my family and I. Seton Hall is near and dear to my heart; it’s where I became a man, where I met the love of my life, where I spent countless hours honing my crafts as a basketball player and a basketball coach. To say that I’m excited to get started as the head men’s basketball coach at Seton Hall University would be an understatement. Thank you to President Nyre and Bryan Felt for this opportunity. It is a dream come true Pirates fans, I look forward to seeing you all in the community, on campus and at the Prudential Center.”

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