North Texas basketball coach Grant McCasland vowed to remain focused the remainder of UNT’s season on Friday night after the Mean Green fell to UAB 76-69 in the semifinals of the Conference USA tournament.
McCasland’s name has come up in connection with the opening at Texas Tech in the last few days after Mark Adams stepped down.
McCasland was a member of Texas Tech’s staff early in his career and has gone on to build a consistently successful program at UNT. The Mean Green had won a C-USA title in three straight seasons before that streak was snapped this year. UNT still won a program-record 26 games and is expected to receive a bid to the National Invitation Tournament for the second straight season. McCasland is 150-77 in seven seasons as a Division I coach, including a 130-65 mark at UNT.
“I love this team and what we have been able to do as a program,” McCasland said. “Our attention is 100% on winning. Last year, we won a game in the NIT.
“Our focus is on how we keep this group together. How do we learn from this?”
McCasland got his start in coaching at Texas Tech as the program’s director of operations from 1999-2001. McCasland’s wife, Cece, played soccer for the Red Raiders.
The road to being a Division I head coach was a slow climb for the former walk-on guard at Baylor.
McCasland left Texas Tech to become an assistant coach at Northeastern Junior College, where he also served as a resident assistant in the school’s dorms. He eventually returned to West Texas and served as the head coach at Midland College from 2004-09.
McCasland has Big 12 experience from his time as an assistant coach at Baylor from 2011-16. He was the head coach at Arkansas State in 2016-17 for a year before taking over at UNT.
McCasland’s name coming up in coaching searches in nothing new. LSU and SMU both considered McCasland when they were in the market for a new coach last season.