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Donny Daniels preps for retirement, announces he is leaving Gonzaga

The assistant coach has been a Zag for nine years.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Salt Lake City Practice Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Gonzaga Bulldogs assistant coach Donny Daniels is prepping for his retirement, and will be leaving the coaching staff in the future, Jim Meehan of the Spokesman Review reported on Tuesday. Daniels joined the staff nine seasons ago.

Daniels will be joining Utah’s staff as the director of basketball operations after his departure from Gonzaga to dial back his time commitments. The director of basketball operations job does not require any recruiting or coaching.

His departure marks the first coaching staff change for Gonzaga since 2013, when Brian Michaelson replaced Ray Giacoletti.

Daniels started coaching at Cal State Fullerton in 1979, and his been on the road ever since.

“I haven’t had a year off, which is remarkable in this profession,” Daniels said. “That’s where I’m the luckiest person. To say I’ve never worked in 40 years is an understatement.”

His success on and off the court is reflected by his recognition. Daniels is part of the inaugural class that will be inducted into the Assistant Coaches Hall of Fame next month.

Often times, it is hard to showcase assistant coaches impact on the team. Just by looking at the win/loss record, you can see what Daniels meant to the program. He has been on the team for all five of Gonzaga’s 30-win seasons, and the recent streak of success in five years, consisting of a championship appearance and two Elite Eights.