BY MIKE DeCOURCY
The Cincinnati Enquirer
Veteran Cincinnati Bearcats assistant coach Larry Harrison is leaving the UC men's basketball program, but not Conference USA.
An assistant throughout coach Bob Huggins' tenure, Harrison has accepted an assistant coaching position under new DePaul coach Pat Kennedy. Earlier this month, Kennedy was hired away from Florida State to take over for former coach Joey Meyer, who was fired after a 3-23 season.
"I've been here eight years, and Bob and the university have been real good to me and for me," Harrison said. "It's going to be tough leaving, but I had a chance to be a part of this growth, and now I can be a part of it there. The only thing we can do at DePaul is go up."
Harrison said DePaul's situation offers the opportunity to rebuild a great tradition in the same way UC did when he arrived with Huggins in 1989.
"It's not going to be easy, but I think we're going to get it going," Harrison said.
His last day of work at UC will be Thursday, and he will go on the road recruiting for DePaul when the summer evaluation period begins July 8.
One strong candidate to replace Harrison is former UC-Irvine head coach Rod Baker, 44, who built a reputation as a strong recruiter during his days as an assistant coach at Seton Hall under P.J. Carlesimo.
At UC-Irvine, Baker compiled a 52-116 mark in six seasons. His contract was not renewed after the Anteaters went 1-25 this past year. He also served five seasons as head coach at Tufts, where he was 73-51.
Baker twice took Irvine to the Big West Conference finals and went 15-12 and finished second in 1994-95, earning league coach of the year honors.
Harrison was a candidate last spring for a number of head coaching jobs, notably American University and Wright State.
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