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Report: Miami University hotly pursuing Arizona assistant James Whitford

James Whitford

James Whitford holds back coach Sean Miller from an official during last season's game against San Diego State. Photo by Chris Morrison-US PRESSWIRE

James Whitford, who has been an assistant to Sean Miller for the past seven seasons — including three with the Arizona Wildcats — is reportedly a strong candidate to take over at Miami University.

For a while, Whitford has been mentioned as a possible replacement for 70-year-old Charlie Coles, who retired after 16 seasons with the RedHawks of the Mid-American Conference.

Things may be heating up, as a line near the bottom of this story from Wednesday suggests Miami is “believed to be on the verge of hiring Arizona assistant James Whitford as its next men’s basketball coach.”

Whitford was with Miller at Xavier for four seasons at Xavier before following him to Tucson. Whitford was elevated to associate head coach after last season, when Miller’s brother, Archie, left to take over the program at Dayton. (Here is his UA bio.)

Having staff continuity is often a good thing, but so, too, is having assistant coaches good enough to be in demand.

Miller last season replaced Archie with Joe Pasternack, the former head coach at New Orleans who had ample West Coast experience as an assistant at Cal.

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