Texas hires Texas Tech head coach Chris Beard as its next head basketball coach, Jeff Goodman of Stadium reports.
Beard replaces Shaka Smart, who left Austin for the head coaching position at Marquette after a disappointing NCAA tournament exit against Abilene Christian.
Beard’s ties to the university date back to his college days. He attended Texas and was a student manager under then-UT head coach Tom Penders before working his way through the coaching ranks at a number of different programs.
Beard worked under Bob and Pat Knight on staff at Texas Tech for 10 years before becoming a head coach.
His big break in coaching came at Arkansas-Little Rock, where he won 30 games and beat Purdue in the NCAA tournament in his first and only year as head coach. He parlayed that success into the head job at Texas Tech, where he took the Red Raiders to the Elite Eight in his second season and the National Championship game in year three. This year’s Red Raiders finished 18-11 and lost in the second round of the NCAA tournament to Arkansas.
Beard was the fourth-highest paid coach in the country at Texas Tech, according to USA Today. He earned a base salary of around $5 million annually. His buyout to leave for a Big 12 school dropped to $4 million on April 1, which could have played a factor in the timing of this move.