By Joe Clark and Joe Laurich, Sports Editor and Staff Writer
Sean Miller was introduced as the new Xavier men’s Head Basketball Coach on Friday. Miller replaces the outgoing Travis Steele, who parted ways with the school on March 16.
“Today is one of the happiest and most exciting days of my life,” Miller said
Miller previously coached at Xavier from 2004-2009, where he took the Musketeers to four NCAA Tournaments. After his stint at Xavier, he took over at Arizona where he was the coach through the 2020-21 season.
“To get back to a culture that I love and trust and a culture and a place that knows me very well. That’s, I think, the most exciting part of all this,” he said. “That although it is a new beginning, there is so much familiarity between so many things.”
Miller also talked a little bit about his roster-building philosophy.
“The No. 1 priority is the players we already have,” Miller said. “Getting a chance to know them, talk to them, and figure out where they’re at in the hopes that a lot of those guys will return and we’ll have a starting point that has some success attached to it.”
Prior to Miller’s introduction on Friday, incoming freshman 4-star wing Kam Craft reaffirmed his commitment to the Musketeers. It’s expected that incoming freshman guard Desmond Claude will do the same soon, while it’s currently unclear where Xavier stands with 4-star wing Tyrell Ward.
Miller also talked about the changing dynamics in college basketball, especially with regards to the transfer portal.
“It’s not as easy as saying, ‘OK, who’s staying? Who’s going? And what’s their class?’ A lot of times it will take almost the entire summer to play out and I think that will be the case this year with us, especially with as much change as everybody here has experienced,” he said.
Xavier will resume their season tomorrow at Madison Square Garden when they take on St. Bonaventure in the NIT Semi-Finals. Jonas Hayes will serve as Head Coach throughout the duration of the NIT.
Photos courtesy of @xuathletics on Instagram