Texas A&M Aggies

Who will replace Billy Kennedy at Texas A&M?

Texas A&M head coach Billy Kennedy leaves the court after losing to Mississippi State an NCAA college basketball game at the Southeastern Conference tournament Thursday, March 14, 2019, in Nashville, Tenn. Mississippi State won 80-54. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
Texas A&M head coach Billy Kennedy leaves the court after losing to Mississippi State an NCAA college basketball game at the Southeastern Conference tournament Thursday, March 14, 2019, in Nashville, Tenn. Mississippi State won 80-54. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey) AP Photo

Texas A&M basketball is moving on from coach Billy Kennedy and a nationwide search for his replacement is on.

The Aggies announced that Kennedy had been fired on Friday after eight seasons in College Station.

A&M, which was 14-18, finished near the bottom of the Southeastern Conference at 6-12. After beating Vanderbilt in the first round of the SEC tournament, the Aggies lost to Mississippi State by 26 on Thursday, ending A&M’s season.

Some of the leading candidates to replace Kennedy are Virginia Tech coach Buzz Williams and University of Houston coach Kelvin Sampson. Williams grew up in Van Alstyne and was an A&M assistant coach under Billie Gillispie from 2004-06. Williams was an assistant at UT Arlington from 1994-98. The 16th-ranked Hokies are NCAA tournament bound. So are the Cougars, who Sampson has coached since 2014. He has also been the head coach at Washington State, Oklahoma and Indiana and been an NBA assistant with the Bucks and Rockets.

According to reports, A&M owes Kennedy a $3.5 million buyout. Kennedy had six consecutive winning seasons, including two NCAA berths in 2016 and 2018.

The next Aggies coach will be their seventh since Shelby Metcalf was fired by athletic John David Crow in 1990 after 27 seasons.

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Stefan Stevenson has been covering sports for the Star-Telegram since 1997. He spent five years covering TCU athletics, which included two BCS bowls, two trips to the college World Series and the move to the Big 12. He has covered the Texas Rangers since 2014 and started reporting on the Dallas Cowboys in 2016.
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