Today’s "Dirt" from The DirtKing

Here’s some "dirt" that I heard while working the phones yesterday……

UTEP Head Coach has emerged as the front runner for the DePaul job. It is a major rebuilding job, and Barbee would be a great fit. He’s really gotten it going at UTEP -the Miners are 24-5 and on a 14 game win streak entering the C-USA Tournament. Isaiah Thomas’ name also keeps popping up regarding the DePaul job, but I don’t think that he is a serious candidate. At this point it seems like it’s Barbee’s job if he wants it.

I’ve heard that two alums have become the leading candidates at Central Arkansas. Grand Canyon Head Coach (and former Arizona Interim Head Coach) Russ Pennell, and former Texas Tech Head Coach James Dickey are apparently the top two choices for UCA AD Brad Teague. He is going to talk to five candidates, but seems focused on Pennell and Dickey. Pennell played at Arkansas under Eddie Sutton in 1979-80, but then transferred to UCA where he was a teammate of Scottie Pippen in 1983-1984. He’s 16-16 in his first year at GCU. Dickey was 164-123 in 10 seasons as the Head Coach at Texas Tech. He was most recently an assistant at Oklahoma State.

My sources have told me that Kansas assistant Joe Dooley had a lengthy conversation with East Carolina AD Terry Holland on Sunday night. Dooley was the Head Coach at ECU from 1995-1999 (57-52). Apparently the conversation was not a fruitful one – Dooley said on Monday that he was not interested in returning to ECU. Two interesting names that I have heard are Wright State Head Coach Brad Brownell, and Morgan State Head Coach Todd Bozeman. I’ll keep you updated as I hear more.

Tubby Smith’s name keeps coming up in discussions about the Oregon job. I personally can’t see him leaving Minnesota, but I keep hearing this one.

Iowa State AD Jamie Pollard has confirmed that Head Coach Greg McDermott and his staff will return next season.

There have been a ton of jobs – especially small college ones – coming into us over the past few days. We update them throughout the day, so keep checking our jobs section for updates.