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USD's Craig Smith reportedly headed to Utah State

South Dakota men's basketball coach Craig Smith is leaving to take the head coaching position at Utah State, according to ESPN's Jeff Goodman. Smith, a Stephen, Minn., native and UND graduate, has spent the past four seasons at South Dakota, wher...

South Dakota men's basketball coach Craig Smith is leaving to take the head coaching position at Utah State, according to ESPN's Jeff Goodman.

Smith, a Stephen, Minn., native and UND graduate, has spent the past four seasons at South Dakota, where he is 79-55. The Coyotes also won a Summit League regular-season title under Smith.

USD went 26-9 with an 11-3 mark in the conference this past season, losing to South Dakota State in the league tournament championship.

Smith, formerly a Nebraska assistant for Tim Miles and former head coach at Mayville State, replaced interim coach Joey James in 2014 and went 17-16 his first year. The Coyotes were 14-18 in 2015-16 prior to posting a surprising 22-10 mark a year ago with a 12-4 mark in the Summit League in 2016-17.

Smith was rumored to have been close to taking the head coaching job at Drake after the 2016-17 season but returned to USD, agreeing to a three-year contract that started at $275,000.

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Utah State fired head coach Tim Duryea on March 11. A former longtime assistant at the school, Duryea went 17-17 this past season in a tie for seventh place in the Mountain West Conference. In his three seasons he was 47-49 with a 22-32 mark in the MWC.

Duryea had another year on his contract at a salary of $379,000.

USU athletic director John Hartwell traveled to the Midwest this week to conduct a series of interviews at a central location, The Salt Lake City Tribune reported. The newspaper reported Smith was seen in Logan on Sunday dining with Hartwell and other USU figures. He was said to have told Hartwell that he wouldn't accept the job prior to visiting the campus.

Smith went 72-29 in three seasons at Mayville State after taking over a 1-25 program at the NAIA level.

Related Topics: BASKETBALL
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