USF ends pursuit of Masiello over resume inaccuracies
MAR 26, 2014 10:50a ET
South Florida officials thought they had found their next men's basketball coach in Steve Masiello.
USF confirmed to the Associated Press on Wednesday that the school had reached a deal with Masiello but that the contract required a ''confirmation of his credentials.'' The coach, who on Wednesday was placed on leave by Manhattan while the school is "reviewing his degree status," never received his degree from the University of Kentucky. USF requires that its coaches have a bachelor's degree.
"Through the verification process it was determined the candidate's credentials could not be substantiated and therefore he did not meet the requirements for the position," USF said in a brief statement. "The national search continues and USF looks forward to introducing a new coach at the appropriate time."
Masiello was enrolled at Kentucky from 1996-2000 and played basketball for both Rick Pitino and then Tubby Smith. But he did not earn his degree, a spokesperson at Kentucky told The Tampa Bay Times. The official bio for Masiello on Manhattan's website said he was a 2000 graduate of Kentucky with a degree in communications.
The resume discrepancy was found during a background check by a search firm that was hired by USF to find a new coach, according to the Associated Press.
Manhattan said in a statement that it "learned there is a question of the validity" of Masiello's degree after South Florida commissioned a background check.
"Masiello is currently in the process of reviewing his degree status with the University of Kentucky," the statement said. "Manhattan College has placed Masiello on leave while he completes this process with the university."
On Tuesday, Masiello agreed to a five-year deal with USF worth just over $1 million annually, sources told CBSSports.com.
The 36-year-old Masiello led Manhattan to a 60-39 mark in three seasons. He had previously been an assistant on Pitino's staff at Louisville.
-- The Associated Press contributed to this report