As reported by Jerry Carino, Seton Hall's Director of Basketball Operations, Steve Sauers, has been hired as an assistant on Dennis Cutts' staff at UC Riverside. Cutts was moved to interim head coach after Jim Wooldridge was named interim athletic director.
"I am extremely happy about the opportunity to work for a good friend, but it's also bittersweet because I love Seton Hall University and I'll always consider it family and a second home," Sauers told Jerry Carino earlier today.
Sauers' departure throws a minor wrench in the search for a third recruiting assistant on Kevin Willard's staff at Seton Hall. Sauers had been initially pegged for a promotion if Willard were to forego bringing in an assistant from outside the program. With just over three months since Dan McHale's departure to Minnesota, Sauers was either not offered the position, or he declined an offer from Kevin Willard for a promotion of sorts to the UC Riverside staff.
Rumors had been circulating late last week that Seton Hall was close to hiring a local candidate with strong AAU ties for the final recruiting position on the staff -- those rumors shrunk to whispers over the weekend. Now, Director of Athletics Pat Lyons and head coach Kevin Willard have to fill two positions on the staff. Grant Billmeier, who is the Coordinator of Basketball Operations at Seton Hall, has to be a strong candidate for the move to DoBO. Willard would be smart to bring aboard any local AAU coach with strong connections as the 2014 recruiting class still remains crucial for success in South Orange.
Steve Sauers was known for establishing a link between Seton Hall and the Canarias Basketball Academy as well as numerous established contacts across the country. His hire is surely a positive one for Dennis Cutts and UC Riverside.
Sauers is the third assistant to leave Seton Hall this off-season. He joins Dan McHale (Minnesota) and Chris Pompey (Cal State Northridge).