The College of Charleston search committee wrapped up the interview portion for its vacant head basketball coaching job Monday and is expected to make a recommendation to school president Glenn McConnell on Tuesday, The Post and Courier has learned.
In rapid-fire succession, the search committee interviewed four candidates on Monday and a total of six over the past 48 hours. The candidates who were interviewed Monday were former Cougars star point guard Anthony Johnson, Clemson assistant coach Earl Grant, Wofford head coach Mike Young and University of Connecticut assistant coach Karl Hobbs, according to the source.
Former UNC Charlotte coach Bobby Lutz and Virginia assistant coach Ritchie McKay were interviewed over the weekend.
Johnson, 39, is still considered the leading candidate to fill the vacancy. Although Johnson has no coaching experience, he has strong support on the search committee, among the fan base and within the Cougar Club, the school's athletic booster club.
Johnson was interviewed for nearly two hours Monday.
"This is A.J.'s job to lose; he was very impressive during the interview," a source inside the school's athletic department said.
Young, 51, has been at Wofford for more than two decades, including the last 12 years as the Terriers' head coach. Young, who has compiled a 176-165 mark, has led the Terriers to three Southern Conference titles and three appearances in the NCAA tournament in the past five seasons.
"When you enjoy the success that our program has enjoyed, people reach out. People inquire," Young told Upstate.com earlier Monday. "There have been other things that I had zero interest in. That's not to gauge what's going on here, but there is obvious interest on my part. Having done this as long as I've done it, I don't think it hurts to talk to people. Going down there doesn't commit me to anything."
Hobbs, 53, is an assistant coach at the University of Connecticut and was the head coach at George Washington from 2001-11. Hobbs has a 166-129 record with three NCAA tournament appearances and one NIT spot with George Washington. Hobbs led Colonials to two Atlantic 10 titles. Hobbs was fired in April 2011 after George Washington went 17-14 and failed to make the postseason.
McKay, 49, has been a head coach at five different schools - Portland State, Colorado State, Oregon State, New Mexico and Liberty. In 13 seasons, McKay is 204-186 with one NCAA tournament appearance with New Mexico and an NIT berth with Colorado State.
Lutz, 56, compiled a 218-157 mark at Charlotte from 1998-2010. Lutz led the 49ers to five NCAA tournament appearances and three NIT berths. Lutz had five 20-win seasons during his 12 years with the 49ers.
Grant, 37, is a former Stall High School star and an assistant coach at Clemson who is considered a top-notch recruiter.
"Obviously this was a humbling experience for me," Grant said in a telephone interview on Monday. "I can sense the committee's desire to make sure they get the right man for the job. As an assistant coach, you always aspire to be a head coach one day, and to have an opportunity to interview with the College's search committee has been a blessing for myself and my family."