Iowa basketball’s Francis to leave the program

Andrew Francis is the first assistant coach under Fran McCaffery to leave the Hawkeye basketball program.


Shivansh Ahuja

Interim Iowa coach Andrew Francis watches from the sideline during a men’s basketball match between Iowa and Rutgers at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, March 2, 2019. The Hawkeyes, celebrating senior night, fell to the Scarlet Knights, 86-72.

Pete Ruden, Sports Editor

Iowa men’s basketball assistant coach Andrew Francis will leave the program for another coaching position, Iowa Athletics confirmed to The Daily Iowan. The Des Moines Register first reported the news.

Francis’ next position has not yet been announced.

The Hawkeyes have enjoyed the same coaching staff — head coach Fran McCaffery and assistants Francis, Kirk Speraw, and Sherman Dillard — since McCaffery took over prior to the 2010-11 season. Francis will be the first coach to leave the staff since the group’s inception.

Francis served as the acting head coach when Iowa lost to Rutgers, 86-72, on March 2 after McCaffery had been suspended for two games.

“It’s a different view, that’s for sure,” Francis said after the game. “It felt good, but it felt, obviously, different. Those guys are used to my voice.”

After previously serving under McCaffery at Sienna, Francis was the first assistant coach hiring McCaffery made after he took over at Iowa.

“Coach Francis — man, it’s going to be tough to see you go,” Iowa point guard Jordan Bohannon wrote on Instagram. “You were one of my favorite people to be around to talk basketball, but more importantly about life. You cared about the type of individuals we would become, and that speaks volumes to the type of coach and person you were.

“We’re all beyond excited for you as you begin this new chapter in your life. You’ve never have been one to brag about yourself, always have been humble, and consistently cared about the team. You were a big reason we had that big of a turnaround this year.”

Francis played a big role in recruiting and helped McCaffery’s staff become the first in Hawkeye history to lead Iowa to at least 18 wins in six consecutive seasons.

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