Hurley extended at Arizona State

Sun Devil Athletics made a significant move to reaffirm Arizona State University’s commitment to the Sun Devil Men’s Basketball program.

Vice President for University Athletics Ray Anderson announced that Sun Devil Men’s Basketball Head Coach Bobby Hurley has agreed to an extension that will keep him with the program through the 2026 season, subject to approval by the Arizona Board of Regents.

“Coach Hurley has made our program relevant nationally with many significant wins and an exciting style, along with a firm commitment to the academic success of our student-athletes,” Anderson remarked. “He has made it clear to us that he wants to be here and we have done likewise with him. We share a strong confidence in the present and future state of Sun Devil Men’s Basketball.”

Sun Devil Men’s Basketball is in the midst of one of the most successful eras in program history, reaching new heights with Hurley at the helm. Not only has he directed Arizona State to three NCAA Tournament appearances and two NCAA Tournament victories, Hurley has also won 20+ games in four of the last six seasons. He is coming off a memorable 23-win campaign in 2022-23 in which the Sun Devils earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament where they secured a First Four victory over Nevada.

“It’s an honor to continue my journey as the head basketball coach at Arizona State University,” Hurley stated. “I want to thank Dr. Crow and Ray Anderson for their commitment to our program and trust in my leadership. I’m looking forward to building off our success this season and taking the program to greater heights in the future.”

In winning 20+ games four times over the past six years, Hurley accomplished a feat seldom reached in Tempe. The program had reached that mark only nine times in the previous 35 years. The 23 wins in 2022-23 is the most in the Hurley era, as the state of the program is as strong as ever. This is only the fifth time since 1980-81 that Arizona State has won 23 games in a season.

Hurley has adapted to the changing landscape of college basketball, patrolling his squads to three NCAA tournaments in the seven seasons that there has been a big dance. He joins Ned Wulk as the only two coaches in program history to take the Sun Devils to three NCAA Tournaments. He is the first ASU coach since Bill Frieder (1989-97) to win multiple NCAA Tournament games in his coaching tenure at ASU.

Under the direction of Hurley, the 2022-23 squad made a historical run at the Pac-12 Conference Tournament, reaching the semifinal round for only the fourth time in program history. Arizona State was seeded No. 6 after finishing the regular season at 11-9 in conference play. The Sun Devils started their stay in Las Vegas off with a 63-57 win over Oregon State in the opening round. They then went on to beat No. 3 seed USC, 77-72, to advance to the semifinals.

The Sun Devils had 13 wins away from home, seven in true road games and six at neutral sites during the 2022-23 season. That included victories over Michigan and VCU at the Legends Classic, as Hurley won his third preseason tournament at Arizona State. Massive wins over Creighton, Arizona, Oregon, USC, and Colorado helped seal the NCAA Tournament berth. Under Hurley, ASU now has two wins in a hostile road environment in Tucson in the last five years, tied for second most in the Pac-12 in that span. The Sun Devils swept two road Pac-12 series this season (Oregon, Bays). It is the first time ASU has swept the Bay schools since 2019-20. It is just the third time since joining the conference and the first since the 1980-81 season that Arizona State has swept two road series in the same season. 

ASU 89, at #7 Arizona 88 (Feb. 25, 2023)
ASU 87, #20 Michigan 62 (Nov. 17, 2022)
ASU 87, #3 UCLA 84 3 OT (Feb. 5, 2022)
ASU 77, #14 Oregon 72 (Feb. 20, 2020)
ASU 66, #22 Arizona 65 (Jan. 25, 2020)
#18 ASU 80, #1 Kansas 76 (Dec. 22, 2018)
ASU 72, #15 Mississippi State 67 (Nov. 19, 2018 at Las Vegas)
#16 ASU 95, at #2 Kansas 85 (Dec. 10, 2017)
ASU 102, #15 Xavier 86 (Nov. 24, 2017 at Las Vegas)
ASU 74, #23 USC 67 (Feb. 12, 2016)
ASU 67, #18 Texas A&M 54 (Dec. 5, 2015)

One of the most recognizable names in college basketball history became the 14th men’s head coach of the Sun Devil program back on April 9, 2015. What has followed is aggressive scheduling, plenty of fast-paced hoops, a strong commitment to academics, and several big-time wins both home and away.

In eight seasons with Hurley in charge, Sun Devil Men’s Basketball matched its highest ranking in school history (third in the Associated Press Poll in December of 2017), notched its best two average attendances in history (10,603 in 2017-18 is the ASU record), recorded its best two non-conference wins in school history (vs. No. 1 Kansas on Dec. 22, 2018 and at No. 2 Kansas on Dec. 10, 2017) and defeated two eventual 2018 No. 1 seeds in a span of a few weeks (Kansas and Xavier).

Following a three-year drought without a First or Second Team Pac-12 All-Conference selection, ASU has had at least one in each of the past six seasons under Hurley. Hurley has coached two Pac-12 Sixth Man of the Year winners in addition to the 2019 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year (Lu Dort). Three Sun Devils have been selected to the Pac-12 All-Tournament team and two have landed on an All-Defensive Team during Hurley’s tenure. In addition to the on-court success, 20+ players have earned Academic All-Conference distinction in the eight years under Hurley.

Coach Hurley’s team continued to improve as the 2021-22 season progressed, as the Sun Devils ended the season winning seven of their final eight regular season games. Arizona State relied on their defense, allowing opponents to shoot only 40% from the field. This was the lowest mark since the 1971-72 season and third-best defensive effort in program history. Hurley added another signature win to his resume when the Sun Devils defeated No. 3 UCLA in triple overtime. It was the third time ASU had defeated a Top-3 team under Hurley. In the non-conference, the Maroon & Gold went on the road and defeated eventual NCAA Tournament participant Creighton. Rare season sweeps of Oregon and Utah highlighted the Pac-12 Conference schedule.

Want some tough dudes who are resilient and bounce back? ASU was 16-5 in the two-year span of 2019-21 after a loss, the best mark in the Pac-12.

Like a coach who makes adjustments at the half and carves out second-half buckets on late possessions? Look no further than the than the ASU bench, as the Sun Devils have 39 halftime comeback deficits in his eight years, also tops in the Pac-12.

Want to change things in a program? Need a stat to show it? The Sun Devils went 11-7 in the Pac-12 in 2019-20 after going 12-6 in 2018-19, marking just the second time in the past 25 seasons the Sun Devils have posted back-to-back winning Pac-12 records.

The 2019-20 season saw ASU (20-11) post its first seven-game Pac-12 win streak since the 1980-81 team won 11 straight. The Sun Devils came back from 22 down (37-15) to beat Arizona, and took down eventual Pac-12 Champion and No. 14 Oregon at Desert Financial Arena in late February. ASU notched its third straight 20-win season for just the third time in program history. Not bad for a team picked to finish sixth in the annual preseason media poll.

Hurley in 2018-19 led ASU to a 23-11 overall mark and 12-6 in the Pac-12, good enough for second in the league for just the fourth time in 41 years of Pac-10/12 play after being picked sixth in the preseason media poll. ASU defeated No. 1 Kansas on Dec. 22, the first win over No. 1 at home in program history and just the second all-time. ASU notched its first NCAA Tournament win since 2009 and posted 23 wins for just the eighth time in school history. Prior to its two straight appearances, ASU had made the NCAA Tournament three times in the previous 22 seasons (1996-2017). ASU averaged 80.04 points per game in 2017-18 and 2018-19, tops in the Pac-12. It had not made March Madness in back-to-back years since 1980-81, yet ASU was the only Pac-12 school to make the NCAAs in 2018 and 2019.

ASU had two-game sweeps of Arizona (first since 2008-09), Oregon State (first since 2009-10) and Cal (second straight). ASU beat No. 15 Mississippi State on Nov. 19 and Utah State on Nov. 21 to win the 2018 MGM Resorts Main Event at T-Mobile Arena, its second straight exempt tourney title after not winning one since November of 1994.

In 2017-18 ASU averaged a school-record 10,603 fans, as the 4,103 extra bodies from 2016-17 to 2017-18 was the second-best increase in all of college hoops. In the 2018-19 season 168,602 fans entered Wells Fargo Arena — an average of 10,538, second-best in school history. ASU raced out to a 12-0 record and was the last undefeated team in the nation, topping eventual No. 1 seeds Xavier and Kansas that had the Sun Devils dribbling out the clock in double-digit wins that they trailed at the half in both. The Sun Devils led the Pac-12 in scoring, as the senior trio of Tra Holder, Shannon Evans and Kodi Justice made Sun Devil hoops fun and fast.

The 1992 NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player and two-time NCAA Champion with Duke notched eight top-100 RPI wins in his first season in Tempe, including wins over SEC co-champion Texas A&M, Ohio Valley top seed Belmont and two Pac-12 NCAA Tournament teams (Oregon State and USC). ASU’s strength of schedule was 23rd and its non-conference schedule was 13th. ASU earned come-from-behind road wins against Creighton (79-77 on Dec. 2) and UNLV (66-56 on Dec. 16).

Tagged with: