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Mar 18, 2024 10:20 am

Snubbed Sycamores brace for departure of head coach

Josh Schertz

Indiana State is bracing for a lose-lose week while mounting enough focus to prepare for the NIT.

The Sycamores (28-6) were left out of the NCAA Tournament on Sunday and before the sting of that omission could be extinguished, reports surfaced that head coach Josh Schertz was nearing a deal to jump to St. Louis University.

SLU fired Travis Ford, who was the highest-paid coach in the Atlantic 10 at $2.5 million annually. Indiana State paid Schertz less than $400,000 in 2023-24.

A $3 million annual salary for Schertz would represent a raise of more than 750 percent.

Multiple reports indicate the two sides were negotiating a contract late Sunday night as part of a colossal chain of events for Indiana State. After the NCAA Tournament field was set, Indiana State accepted a spot in the NIT and will play a first-round game at home Tuesday night against SMU.

NCAA Tournament committee chair Dr. Charles McClelland reasoned Indiana State didn’t measure up with the rest of the finalized field because of a poor nonconference slate.

The Sycamores were regular-season champions in the Missouri Valley but failed to secure the automatic conference bid when they lost to Drake in the conference tournament championship game.

“They had a magnificent season. They had great metrics,” McClelland said of leaving Indiana State out of the NCAA Tournament. “But when you start to look at their non-conference and the games they played outside of conference, that was something we had to take a look at.”

Schertz, 48, has a 62-39 record at Indiana State and 399-108 overall including his 337-69 record at Lincoln Memorial (DII). Schertz had 11 consecutive 20-win seasons with the Railsplitters and was seven-time South Atlantic Conference Coach of the Year.

–Field Level Media

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