Brannen reached the NCAA tournament twice in four seasons at Northern Kentucky.
Former Northern Kentucky head coach John Brannen was named the head coach at Cincinnati on Sunday. Brannen replaces Mick Cronin, who was hired by UCLA on April 9 after 13 seasons with the Bearcats.
"We are thrilled to welcome John, his wife Lisa and their daughters, Jaylee and Katelyn, to the Bearcats family," Cincinnati athletic director Mike Bohn said. "He has a proven record as a head coach, longtime ties to the local community and coaches an exciting style of basketball. We were impressed with his passion, drive, determination and basketball acumen during the interview process where he truly emerged as the best coach to lead the Cincinnati basketball program with a bright future."
Brannen went 81–51 in four seasons with Northern Kentucky from 2015-19. He reached the NCAA tournament in 2017 and 2019, winning the Horizon League regular-season championship in each of the past two seasons.
Cincinnati has reached the NCAA tournament in each of the last nine seasons. Its last Sweet 16 appearance came in 2012.