Updated: Men’s Basketball: Bill Carmody fired after 13 seasons

Ava Wallace and Josh Walfish

Bill Carmody has been fired after 13 seasons as the head coach of Northwestern’s men’s basketball team.

At a news conference this evening, athletic director Jim Phillips said NU expects all its coaches to compete for conference and national trophies. Under Carmody’s leadership, the Wildcats never made it to the NCAA Tournament.

“Northwestern will forever be appreciative to Bill and his family for what he did for Northwestern basketball, but the time has come for a change,” Phillips told reporters. “This is not just about one year. The final decision was based upon my belief that we needed a different voice, a new leader, a change in order to ultimately accomplish our goals.”

Phillips said he made his decision Friday and informed Carmody of the decision at an 8 a.m. meeting Saturday. Less than two hours later, the athletic department announced Carmody would not return for his 14th season.

The announcement came less than two days after the No. 11 seed Wildcats lost their first-round match-up in the Big Ten Tournament to sixth-seeded Iowa. Speculation over Carmody’s future began in earnest a few weeks ago, in the midst of NU’s eight-game regular season losing streak.

This season was plagued by injuries and other roadblocks, and NU posted a 13-19 record and went 4-14 in conference play. Standout senior Drew Crawford suffered a season-ending shoulder injury in December, and junior JerShon Cobb was suspended. Freshman talent Sanjay Lumpkin and Chier Ajou were benched with injuries, and graduate-student forward Jared Swopshire was out for the season after a knee injury in February.

Carmody came to NU after leading Princeton’s men’s basketball program, later bringing the Cats to four postseason appearances. He posts a 5-13 record in the Big Ten Tournament.

— Ava Wallace and Josh Walfish