Bradley hoops coach Les fired after nine seasons

2011-03-06T16:46:00Z 2011-03-07T22:08:36Z Bradley hoops coach Les fired after nine seasonsThe Associated Press The Associated Press
March 06, 2011 4:46 pm  • 

PEORIA -- Jim Les was fired Sunday as Bradley's basketball coach, ending a nine-year run that featured an upset of Kansas in the first round of the 2006 NCAA tournament.

The Braves were only 12-20 this season, including 4-14 in the Missouri Valley Conference.

Les played at Bradley and for seven seasons in the NBA before moving into coaching. He was 154-140 overall with a 74-88 in the Missouri Valley, and took his team to the round of 16 of the NCAA tournament in 2006.

That was also the last time the Braves made the NCAA tournament, even though they won at least 21 games each season from 2006-09 and qualified for the postseason every year.

Athletic director Michael Cross said on the school's website the move was made to move the program forward. A national search for a replacement will begin immediately.

"While changing head coaches is always difficult, this action is in the long-term, best interests of Bradley basketball, our student-athletes and the university as a whole," Cross said in a statement. "There were a number of factors that were considered in my analysis."

He did not reveal any of those factors, only to say "this decision was made after a great deal of thought and research, and was not made lightly."

Les was fired two days after the Braves lost 70-56 to Wichita State in the quarterfinals of the Missouri Valley tournament. Bradley won its opener 63-48 over Drake.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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