Washington State fires Ernie Kent after 5 seasons

Washington State fired head coach Ernie Kent on Thursday after five seasons in which he was unable to turn around the Cougars’ program and had a significant exodus of players under his watch.

Athletic director Pat Chun announced the decision a day after the Cougars finished an 11-21 season with an 84-51 loss to Oregon in the Pac-12 tournament.

Kent was unable to get Washington State to thrive in his second stint as a head coach in the Pac-12.

Kent had three years remaining on his contract and will be paid $4.2 million as part of his firing.

Kent was hired in 2014 by former athletic director Bill Moos to replace Ken Bone.

PAC-12 TOURNAMENT

Washington 78, USC 75: Jaylen Nowell scored 24 points, David Crisp added 18 and the Huskies (25-7) held off a late charge to beat the Trojans (16-17) in the quarterfinals in Las Vegas.

Colorado 73, Oregon State 58: McKinley Wright IV scored 17 points and the Buffaloes (21-11) wasted most of a 21-point lead before knocking off the Beavers (18-13).

Arizona State 83, UCLA 72: Romello White scored 19 points, Rob Edwards added 15 and the Sun Devils (22-9) withstood a second-half push by the Bruins (17-16).

Top 25 men

#2 Virginia 76, N.C. State 56: Kyle Guy scored 29 points, including seven 3-pointers, for the Cavaliers (29-2) in the ACC tournament quarterfinals in Charlotte. N.C.

#3 No. Carolina 83, Louisville 70: Luke Maye had 19 points and nine rebounds, Coby White added 17 points, seven rebounds and six assists and the Tar Heels (27-5) beat the Cardinals (20-13) in the ACC.

#5 Duke 84, Syracuse 72: Zion Williamson made all 13 of his shots, five on high-flying dunks, and scored 29 points in his return to lead the Blue Devils (27-5) and set up a semifinal matchup with North Carolina in the ACC.

West Virginia 79, #7 Texas Tech 74: Emmitt Mathews scored a career-high 28 points and the 10th-seeded Mountaineers (14-19) upset the Red Raiders (26-6) in the Big 12 tournament quarterfinals in Kansas City, Mo.

#12 Florida State 65, #16 Virginia Tech 63: Terance Mann hit a wild off-balance shot from the right side that rattled around the rim before dropping through the net with 1.8 seconds left in overtime to lift the the fourth-seeded Seminoles (26-6) over the fifth-seeded Hokies (24-8) in the ACC.

#14 Nevada 77, Boise State 69: Jazz Johnson scored 20 points, Caleb Martin had 19 and the Wolf Pack (29-3) tied the school record for victories in a season by advancing to the Mountain West tournament semifinals in Las Vegas.

#15 Kansas State 70, TCU 61: Xavier Snead scored 19 points, including a 3-pointer as the shot clock sounded in the final minute, and the Wildcats (25-7) advanced to the Big 12 semifinals.

#17 Kansas 65, Texas 57: Devon Dotson scored 17 points, Dedric Lawson added 16 and the Jayhawks (24-8) beat the Longhorns (16-16) in the Big 12

#18 Buffalo 82, Akron 46: Jeremy Harris scored 23 points to lead the Bulls (29-3) in the Mid-American tournament quarterfinals in Cleveland. After the game, Buffalo head coach Nate Oats signed an extension through 2024.

Nebraska 69, #21 Maryland 61: James Palmer scored 24 points and the Cornhuskers (18-15) shocked the Terrapins (22-10) in the Big Ten tournament quarterfinals in Chicago.

#22 Auburn 71, Missouri 71: Bryce Brown scored all 17 of his points in the second half for the Tigers (23-9) in the second round of the SEC tournament in Nashville.

#23 Marquette 86, St. John’s 54: Markus Howard scored 12 of his 30 points in a game-breaking 23-2 second-half run, and the second-seeded Golden Eagles (24-8) snapped a four-game losing streak in the Big East tournament quarterfinals in New York.

#25 Villanova 73, Providence 62: Eric Paschall had 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Wildcats (23-9) in the Big East tournament.

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/collegesports/article/Washington-State-fires-Ernie-Kent-after-5-seasons-13690498.php.

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