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WSU associate head coach Jim Shaw says he's 'disappointed' in not being named head coach

Mar. 30—PULLMAN — Jim Shaw said he's disappointed in Washington State's decision to move on from him as a candidate for the school's opening at head basketball coach.

Shaw wrote as much in a statement provided to The Spokesman-Review, saying, "I've never asked for anything to be given to me, however, with my background and extensive coaching experience I believe I earned the opportunity to be the head coach at WSU. The decision makers felt otherwise."

Here is the statement in full.

Regarding the decision to move in another direction with the head coaching position, I am disappointed.

The most important part of any program is the players, and I've had the opportunity to build relationships and work with amazing young men the past 5 years. Many are like sons to me.

I will continue to be invested in their success both on and off the court. I am grateful for these relationships and they will last forever.

I've never asked for anything to be given to me, however, with my background and extensive coaching experience I believe I earned the opportunity to be the head coach at WSU. The decision makers felt otherwise.

I want to thank the Players, along with the Cougar Nation and fans for their love and support. It means the world to me and will be cherished as I move forward with the next chapter of my career and life.

With gratitude,

Jim Shaw

Shaw interviewed for the position, a source close to the situation confirmed, but on Friday, players received a text message saying the program is moving in a different direction, away from the WSU assistant of five seasons. It's one reason why some of the seven Cougars to enter the transfer portal have chosen to do so.

Shaw confirmed to The Spokesman-Review that while he remains on staff at WSU , he's deciding between following former head coach Kyle Smith to Stanford or accepting another one of the offers he holds.

On Friday, in a statement to CougCenter, Smith added he is also disappointed in the decision, writing, "... I am heartbroken. I think I am (a) fairly good evaluator of talent, especially in coaching talent. I have worked with some great coaches and Jim is as good as any. We would not have had a chance to do what we did without Jim.

"I wish the next coach luck, but I am sad to see our legacy gone. Thus is life. God has a plan."

This week, seven Cougars have entered the transfer portal: guard Myles Rice, senior wing Andrej Jakimovski, sophomore wing Kymany Houinsou, freshman center Rueben Chinyelu, senior guard Jabe Mullins, reserve guard Dylan Darling and walk-on center AJ LeBeau.

All retain the option to return to WSU. In a message he posted, Jakimovski emphasized he's considering it.

Smith is also bringing three WSU assistants with him to Stanford, as first reported by Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports and confirmed by a source to The Spokesman-Review: Wayne Hunter, Stephen Frankoski and Derrick Wrobel.

Prior to coming to WSU with Smith in time for the 2019-20 season, Shaw worked four seasons as the head coach of his alma mater, Division II Western Oregon, where he posted an overall record of 102-30. He led the Wolves to a No. 1 ranking and the Division II national tournament on three occasions.

Shaw, who also previously spent nine seasons as an assistant at Washington, was named WSU's associate head coach ahead of the 2020-21 season.