In what has been a continuing theme this spring and summer, Wright State athletic director Bob Grant is hiring once again after softball’s Lynn Curylo became the latest head coach to leave the school.
Curylo, who was 147-195 in six seasons while guiding the Raiders to back-to-back Horizon League championship games and a school-record 18 conference wins in 2016, accepted the head coaching position at Illinois-Chicago, her alma mater, on Monday.
Her departure comes one week after baseball coach Greg Lovelady left for Central Florida.
“You don’t usually lose coaches in July,” Grant said. “By the time you get to this point of the summer you think you’re safe. But the pull of her playing there and her family’s all there, it’s home for her, I thought it might happen. So we’re not overly surprised.”
Wright State lost two seniors off the 2016 team that went 37-24 and finished a half game behind UIC in the regular season.
“Lynn did a great job, and we’re sad she’s leaving, but unlike a lot of programs when you get a new coach in, they’re ready made to win,” Grant said. “This is the best team in the Horizon League. We’re going to be handing the keys to a Ferrari to somebody. Interest is already very high. We will do a full-blown search.
Since the first week of April, Grant has hired new head coaches in men’s basketball (Scott Nagy), women’s basketball (Katrina Merriweather) and baseball (Jeff Mercer) in addition to formally promoting interim coach Rick Williamson to lead the cross country and track programs.
Grant said the search for Curylo’s replacement is already underway.
“We’re going to start doing phone interviews next week and start bringing candidates here in about two weeks,” he said. “There’s three categories we’ll look at it, which is pretty typical for most of our searches.
“We’ll look at lower level Division I head coaches who look at this as ‘the Horizon League is better, Wright State pays better, better facilities, better atmosphere, better culture,’ ” Grant continued. “We’ll also look at Division II top-notch coaches. And there’s always the category of top-level assistant coaches that want their first job. My guess is the pool we attract will have some of all of those folks in it.”
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