Ron Sanchez resigns as 49ers’ basketball coach to return to UVA as assistant

Charlotte won the CBI tournament at the end of last season

Ron Sanchez (Nell Redmond / AP Photo)

CHARLOTTE — Ron Sanchez has resigned as head coach of the Charlotte 49ers men’s basketball team to return to his previous job.

Sanchez took over the 49ers on March 19, 2018, inheriting a team coming off a 6-23 campaign. In five years Charlotte went 72-78 under the former Virginia assistant, highlighted by winning the College Basketball Invitational championship this past season, the Niners’ first postseason tournament title in school history.

Shortly after the announcement of Sanchez’s resignation, Virginia released a statement that Sanchez is returning to the Cavaliers to rejoin coach Tony Bennett’s staff.

“The University of Virginia is truly special to me and my family,” Sanchez, who was at UVA for nine seasons, said in his statement. “It is the only institution I would vacate my head coaching position for. I’m thankful for the opportunity to return to Grounds with a newfound lens and perspective.

“I’m also excited to reconnect with the staff and join their efforts in sustaining the incredible success this program has had over the last decade. I look forward to serving Coach Bennett, the staff, the student-athletes and our community.”

The 49ers’ 22 wins this past season were the most for Charlotte since 2001.

“Ron took over a proud but struggling program and carefully rebuilt it into a 22-game winner. He has led with class, dignity and devotion to our young men,” Charlotte director of athletics Mike Hill said. “His decision to step down from Charlotte was a difficult one for him and everyone associated with our program. We wish him and his family every happiness.”

Hill said the team has already begun a national search for a replacement.