Chris Mascaro
Wednesday March 26th, 2014

Steve Masiello (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) Steve Masiello's Jaspers went 25-8 this season and made the NCAA tournament. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Manhattan coach Steve Masiello and the University of South Florida appeared to have a deal in place for the 36-year-old to become the next head coach of the Bulls, but talks broke down late Tuesday night due to a "discrepancy" in Masiello's background check.

Sources told ESPN.com's Brett McMurphy on Wednesday that the issue was Masiello's résumé, specifically that he never graduated from the University of Kentucky, where he played basketball as a walk-on under Rick Pitino.

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Writes McMurphy, "On the Manhattan and Louisville official websites — Masiello was an assistant at Louisville from 2005-11 before becoming head coach at Manhattan in 2011 — it indicated he was a 2000 graduate of Kentucky with a degree in communications.

"However, Masiello did not graduate from Kentucky, UK spokeswoman Ashley Caressen told ESPN. Masiello attended UK from the fall of 1996 to the summer of 2000 but never earned his degree, Caressen said."

Masiello reportedly contacted UK's registrar office on Tuesday, but Caressen said the conversation "was confidential," according to McMurphy.

Masiello's agent, Jason Charney, declined to comment Wednesday morning when reached by McMurphy.

Manhattan has placed Masiello on leave while he sorts through the issue with the University of Kentucky, according to a statement from the school.

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