One of the many things that Mark Few has done a great job of during his tenure at Gonzaga has been his ability to locate and bring on talented assistant coaches. Unfortunately, with Gonzaga's success over the years one of the side effects is that the rest of the world notices, particularly other schools. Few has recently lost a pair of assistants in Bill Grier who left for San Diego and, most recently, Leon Rice who went to Boise State and has had solid success so far. Now, it looks like Ray Giacoletti is being seriously targeted by a prominent Missouri Valley program as a potential head coach. In the past 24 hours, it sounds like things have moved quickly.
CBS' Jeff Goodman initially reported the news...
Two names I am hearing at Drake are Creighton assistant Darian DeVries and Gonzaga asst. and ex-Utah coach Ray Giacoletti.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanCBS) March 25, 2013
In the past hour, a local Des Moines radio show tweeted this:
Sounds like former Utah coach, current Zag's asst, Ray Giacoletti is getting close to bring named Drakes next coach.— MillerandBrinson (@MillerBrinson) March 26, 2013
Ray Giacoletti has been a key member of the staff for the past six years but the odds of him moving to another head coaching job in the future were very good. Giacoletti has plenty of experience as a head coach as he spent four years as the head man at Eastern Washington prior to being hired by Utah as their head coach in 2004. He was at Utah until the conclusion of 2007 and he is still looked upon less than fondly by the Utes fanbase as this article by our colleagues over at Block U clearly indicates.
The move for Giacoletti makes sense as he is a Midwest guy and is a native of Peoria, Illinois. Drake has a recent history of success and tournament appearances. The Bulldogs went 15-17 last season and finished 8th in the MVC.
We'll continue to track this story if any further developments come to light and, of course, if they do we will try and track down likely candidates to replace Giacoletti. Odds are that Mark Few would look to bring in a defensive-minded coach as Giacoletti came to Gonzaga with that reputation.