Doug Doughty. Photo by Ryan Hunt.

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An ESPN list shows that 56 Division I men’s basketball programs have changed head coaches since the end of the 2021-22 season, topped by the unforeseen retirement of Villanova’s Jay Wright.

Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski had let it be known that the 2021-22 season would be his last and that he would be succeeded by John Scheyer off his own staff. Wright’s successor is former Wildcats assistant Kyle Neptune, recently the head coach at Fordham and a former player at Lehigh.

Louisville named former Cardinals player Kenny Payne to replace Chris Mack, who was dismissed in January after four seasons at the helm. The Cardinals finished the season with former assistant Mike Pegues as interim coach.

Pegues subsequently joined the staff at Butler, where Thad Matta has returned to coaching after a medical condition sidelined him for five years.  

Matta, previously the head coach at Ohio State, also was the head coach at Xavier after an earlier stint as the head coach at Butler.

Payne, an assistant with the New York Knicks over the previous two seasons, earlier had served as an assistant at Kentucky, where he was the associate head coach, and  Oregon. 

Transfer portal

The latest player to join UVa’s football program off the transfer portal is Cody Brown, a four-star running back from Miami, where he played in 10 games last year as a freshman. He replaces Wayne Taulapapa, who transferred to Washington

Brown, who previously had committed to Tennessee, played in 10 games for Miami last year and  had 34 carries for 139 yards and three touchdowns. Returning quarterback Brennan Armstrong had a team-high 98 carries for UVa last season, with Mike Hollins second among the returnees with 49.

In Basketball

After 11 seasons as head women’s basketball coach at Wake Forest, Roanoke-bred coach Jenn Hoover lost her job Wednesday.

Hoover, was a standout at William Byrd in Vinton before heading to Wake, where she was a three-time All-ACC player, as well as the leading career scorer and rebounder.

She leaves the program with a 142-170 coaching record after putting up back-to-back 20-win seasons at High Point.

  • Kerwin Walton, who hit a team-high 58 3-pointers for North Carolina this past season, is transferring to Creighton. Walton, who is from Hopkins, Minn., played in 31 of 39 games, with one start.
  • Additions to the Virginia women’s basketball staff include Mariah White, who played for new UVa women’s coach Amaka Agugua-Hamilton at Missouri State. White began her career at Cleveland State.

Tech Additions

New to the Virginia Tech basketball teams are 6-9 Grant Basile from Wright State, where he averaged 18.4 points and 8.5 rebounds for the men this past season, and 6-foot guard Ashley Owusu, a Woodbridge product who was a three-year starter for Maryland’s women and a 1,000-point scorer.

ACC baseball

Virginia Tech is fourth and Virginia is 11th in the Baseball America poll going into the final week of the regular season. Six ACC teams are in the top 13, including Miami at No. 6, Louisville at No. 7, Notre Dame at No. 8 and Florida State at No. 13.

The regular season ends May 21 with Virginia at Louisville and Duke at Virginia Tech. 

The ACC Tournament is scheduled for May 24-29 at Truist Field in Charlotte, N.C. It will have a 12-team pool play format.

Rising swiftly

Andrew Abbott, a former Virginia pitcher from Halifax County struck out 40 batters in 27 innings over five games for the Cincinnati Reds’ High-A Dayton affiliate. He was promoted to AA Chattanooga on Tuesday. Abbott, a second-round draft pick in 2021, is 3-0 with an 0.67 ERA.  

Doug Doughty has been writing for more than 50 years starting as a high school student in Washington,...