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Fates of UL coaches put on hold

Thursday's season ending press conference has been cancelled while UL looks at the future

Thursday, March 12, 2009 - 9:42am

The UL basketball programs could be in for a shake-up...but not today.

Thursday's season ending press conference to discuss the status of head coaches Errol Rogers (women) and Robert Lee (men) has been cancelled because the university and the athletic department have not yet made up their minds on the future of the UL basketball programs.

The women's team finished this season a disappointing 3-and-27, including zero conference wins. Errol Rogers has been the team's head coach for two seasons.

Robert Lee's mens squad ended their season in heartbreaking fashion in round one of the Sun Belt Conference tournament. UL lost by two points to Florida International at the Cajundome two weeks ago, finishing their season at 10-20 overall. Lee has spent 13 seasons in Lafayette, 5 of those as head coach.

Both coaches have been under fire for their respective program's lack of success in recent seasons. Too many losses and too few fans have sparked the idea of change at the UL Athletics Office. The futures of the Cajuns' two head men are still up in the air as of now.

Please see below a statement from UL Athletics Director David Walker…

After each season, the Athletic Administration meets with the coaches to review the season and discuss the plans and direction of the program for the future. We are now in the process of evaluating both men’s and women’s basketball. Because of the difficult season experienced by both programs, this evaluation has been both very thorough and time-consuming.

If the only criteria for a program’s potential for success were wins and losses, the evaluation would be unnecessary. However, in today’s college athletics, academic success, student-athlete eligibility and retention and the potential for successful recruiting are extremely important factors.

I fully understand the urgency felt by many to have the University announce its plans for both men’s and women’s basketball. While we also feel this urgency, the eight coaches in these programs have dedicated themselves to the University, and I believe they and their families deserve a sincere and honest evaluation. We believe it is far more important to make the right decision than it is to make a quick decision.

Because a recommendation has not yet been forwarded to the President, I do not feel it would be fair to our coaches to be placed in a position to respond to questions they are unable to answer. Therefore, we have decided to cancel our regularly scheduled coach’s media conference.

As soon as we have completed the evaluation of these programs and decided on a direction we feel will give us the best chance for success, we will announce our decision.