John Shumate, an assistant at Notre Dame, was named Thursday as Southern Methodist's new basketball coach and said he would stress academic success as well as athletic victories.
Shumate, 37, replaces Dave Bliss, who resigned to go to the University of New Mexico after leading the Mustangs to the NCAA tournament last spring.Shumate, a former All-American at Notre Dame who later played in the NBA with six teams during a seven-year career, said he decided to take the job after talking with SMU Athletic Director Doug Single, school president A. Kenneth Pye and a committee of students, players and faculty members on Wednesday.
Following the meetings, Shumate said he was convinced SMU is committed to ensuring that athletes get an education.
"(MU officials) believe in getting the job done the right way, because it can be done the right way. It's tougher, it's more difficult, but that's what it's all about," Shumate said at a news conference at SMU.
SMU's football program was suspended for all of last season by the NCAA for repeated recruiting violations, becoming the first school ever subject to the "death penalty."