Even as the East Carolina basketball team improved to 4-1 under interim coach Michael Perry on Thursday with a 76-68 win against Grambling, it appears almost certain that the school will look elsewhere to find a permanent successor to Jeff Lebo.
The process began in earnest Friday with the announcement that athletic director Jeff Compher has contracted a search firm to “identify and provide information about potential candidates.”
Collegiate Sports Associates, represented by former NC State athletic director Todd Turner and former Wake Forest basketball coach Dave Odom, is the same advisory group that helped in the hiring of Pirates football coach Scottie Montgomery.
Compher has also assembled an in-house advisory group to help him conduct the search and interview process.
Members of that group are Pirate Club executive board member Garrett Blackwelder, faculty athletic representative Dr. Cal Christian, Board of Trustees members Edwin Clar and Mark Copeland, Pirate Club executive board member and Athletic Hall of Fame inductee Vonta Leach, incoming Pirate Club President Kel Normann, Student government President La’Quon Rogers, Pirate Club executive board member Si Seymour, former senior woman’s administrator and Hall of Fame inductee Rosie Thompson and senior associate AD Lee Workman.
The group held its first meeting on Thursday.
“I was very pleased with the thoughtful input and discussion we had in our meeting,” Compher said in a statement. “To be able to get that many people together at this time of the year was very impressive and speaks to importance of this hire and what it will mean for the future of the ECU men’s basketball program.
“I am also grateful to be working with Collegiate Sports Associates. Todd Turner and Dave Odom are very familiar with ECU and well-connected to the national men’s basketball landscape.”
Lebo unexpectedly resigned on Nov. 29, six games into his seventh season as the Pirates’ coach. The team was 2-4 at the time of his departure.