Kennesaw State’s Amir Abdur-Rahim hired as men’s basketball coach

Abdur-Rahim led Kennesaw State’s meteoric rise from a bottom-tier team to a tournament contender. SPECIAL TO THE ORACLE / UNIVERSITY OF KENNESAW STATE ATHLETICS PHOTO

USF Athletics Director Michael Kelly announced the hire of former Kennesaw State head coach Amir Abdur-Rahim Wednesday afternoon, filling the role that former men’s basketball coach Brian Gregory previously held.

Although it was confirmed by USF Athletics in the late afternoon, the Twitter buzz of his hire began around noon on Wednesday when CBS Sports reporter Jon Rothstein broke the news.

The addition of Abdur-Rahim will be a landmark addition for the men’s team, considering his previous rebuilding of the Kennesaw State program.

Abdur-Rahim transformed the Owls from a one-win program to an NCAA Tournament appearance in just four seasons after his hire in 2019. He guided Kennesaw State to its first Atlantic Sun title and was named ASUN Coach of the Year in 2023.

Kennesaw State fell to Xavier in the first round of this year’s tournament, nearly upsetting the No. 3 seeded Musketeers in the first NCAA tournament.

He comes to USF with a 45-74 career record, spending time as an assistant at top programs Texas A&M and Georgia before receiving his first head coaching role in 2019.

Mike Brey, former Notre Dame coach and Utah State coach Ryan Odom were thought to be the Bulls’ top candidates, but Brey decided to work in TV while Odom accepted a position at VCU on Wednesday, according to an article by Bleacher Report.

This is a developing story. Stay with The Oracle for updates.