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Ohio State fires basketball coach Holtmann after disappointing seasons

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Ohio State University has decided to part ways with basketball coach Chris Holtmann after seven years at the helm, citing ongoing subpar performance. The decision comes amid a disappointing season for the Buckeyes, who have struggled in both conference play and on the road.

Associate head coach Jake Diebler will take over coaching duties for the remainder of the season, while the university begins the search for a new head coach. Athletic director Gene Smith expressed the need for a spark to reinvigorate the program, acknowledging that a coaching change was necessary for the team’s sake.

Holtmann, who was hired in 2017 from Butler University, amassed a record of 137-86 during his tenure at Ohio State. However, recent seasons have been marked by underwhelming performances, including the team’s first losing season in nearly two decades in 2022-23.

Despite initial optimism surrounding Holtmann’s appointment, Ohio State failed to achieve significant success under his leadership, with no regular-season titles or conference tournament victories. Smith, who will retire in July, confirmed that the search for a new coach would be overseen by incoming athletics director Ross Bjork.

Holtmann’s departure comes with financial implications, as he is owed the remaining $12.8 million on his contract after being terminated. The university’s decision reflects a commitment to revitalizing the basketball program and returning it to a competitive position within the conference and nationally.

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