Ball State names Whitford hoops coach

Apr 6, 2013 - 11:57 PM Muncie, IN (Sports Network) - Ball State University named James Whitford, the associate head coach at Arizona, as its new head men's basketball coach.

Whitford replaces Billy Taylor, who was fired last month after six seasons. He will be introduced as the 19th head coach in program history during a Wednesday press conference.

Whitford has been on Sean Miller's staff at Arizona for four years, including the past two as the associate head coach. He has been with Miller for eight seasons, dating back to Miller's days guiding the Xavier program.

"I want to thank President Gora and Bill Scholl for giving me this incredible opportunity at Ball State," Whitford said. "In my mind, Ball State offers the best combination of academic excellence, basketball tradition, outstanding arena and fan support of any school in the Mid-American Conference. When you add the unparalleled recruiting base in the state of Indiana and the great teaching those high school players receive from their various coaches, this job became one I targeted over the last few weeks."

The 41-year-old Whitford served on the staff at Miami University under Charlie Coles for 11 seasons before joining Miller at Xavier.

The Cardinals were 15-15 this season, including an 8-8 mark in conference play. Taylor compiled an 84-99 record in his six years guiding the program.

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