It was known earlier today that Pitt basketball head coach Jamie Dixon would be leaving the Panthers to take over in the same capacity at TCU. Late in the day on Monday a short time ago, the school issued an official statement from both athletics director Scott Barnes and Pitt Chancellor, Patrick Gallagher:
Statement from University of Pittsburgh Chancellor Patrick Gallagher:
"For 17 years - 13 as head coachâJamie Dixon has been a remarkable ambassador for the University of Pittsburgh. He was a great leader who cared deeply for our student-athletes and our entire basketball program. I can appreciate that the rare chance of coaching for your alma mater does not come up very often and is hard to pass up, but we will miss him here at Pitt. We wish him the best and we now turn our attention to advancing our program, building on the solid foundation Jamie left us."
Statement from University of Pittsburgh Athletic Director Scott Barnes:
"On behalf of the University of Pittsburgh, I want to thank Jamie for his tremendous service to not only Pitt basketball but our entire institution. His impact on our university went well beyond his coaching responsibilities. Jamie has always represented Pitt, and the game of college basketball, in exceptional fashion. For all of these things we are eternally grateful."
"In recent weeks, Jamie and I engaged in a number of conversations regarding his long-term personal and professional aspirations. In accepting the job at TCU he is, in many ways, returning home. We all wish him and his family the very best in his new endeavor."
"Our focus now turns to securing new leadership for our basketball program. This provides us with the opportunity to find an individual who will maintain, and build upon, our stature as a perennial NCAA Tournament program."
"The University of Pittsburgh is an outstanding institution with all of the elements necessary to attract an equally outstanding basketball coach. I am excited about the opportunity we have before us."
Both obviously were appreciative of Dixon's efforts in the past while looking towards the future. One interesting note here was Barnes' comments about consulting with Dixon over the past few weeks regarding the situation. While news just leaked about a potential departure over the past weekend, this appears to be something that Barnes and Dixon have discussed for some time and even before Pitt's NCAA Tournament appearance this past weekend.
Barnes held a press conference that aired on the flagship station, 93.7 FM The Fan around the same time and we'll be bringing you the important notes from that shortly.