Temple's Fran Dunphy to step down after 2018-19 season; Aaron McKie will succeed him

NOVA14P
Temple coach Fran Dunphy glances at the scoreboard during a game against Villanova at the Liacouras Center on Dec. 13, 2017.

Temple has decided that Fran Dunphy will coach the men’s basketball team one more year and then be succeeded by assistant coach Aaron McKie, according to a source.

The source said that it isn’t a done deal. The sides are currently attempting to finalize the deal, according to the source and hoping to get it done this weekend. Temple does not  plan to hold a news conference, but is expected to issue a release on the matter, once finalized.

Dunphy just completed his 12th season at Temple. The Owls went 17-16 and lost to eventual champion Penn State, 63-57, in the first round of the NIT.

Dunphy has guided the Owls to the NCAA tournament seven times and the NIT twice.

McKie, the former Temple great and long-time NBA player, has been a Temple assistant since being hired Aug. 21, 2014.

Multiple sources have confirmed that Dunphy, who turns 70 in October, had three years remaining on his contract.

McKie, 45, played 13 years in the NBA after being selected in the first round by the Portland Trail Blazers (17th overall) in the 1994 draft. Seven of his seasons were with the Sixers, where he was among the team’s more popular players.

He then spent six years as an assistant coach with the Sixers before coming to Temple.

Dunphy’s record at Temple is 247-152. Overall he is 557-315. Before coming to Temple he was 310-163 at Penn, guiding the Quakers to nine NCAA tournaments.

A source said the Temple and Dunphy began meeting about this plan on March 15, the day after the Owls season-ending loss to Penn State.

The Owls last made the NCAA tournament in 2016 when they were the regular-season champions in the American Athletic Conference. In the last two years, they were 33-32.

Temple’s fan base was upset that the Owls have appeared in the NCAAs just once in the last five years and Dunphy took the brunt of the criticism.

McKie is highly regarded among Temple, from his time as player and now as an assistant coach, but this would be his first head coaching job.

A former high school star at Philadelphia’s Simon Gratz, Temple will no doubt hope that McKie can gain a foothold in recruiting in Philadelphia.

This year’s roster included just two players from the Philadelphia area, starting guard Shizz Alston from the Haverford School and deep reserve Steve Leonard, a walk-on from Perkiomen Valley.

Regardless of the coaching change, competing in the AAC, an underrated conference, will continue to be difficult. Since leaving the Atlantic Ten and joining the AAC before the 2013-14 season, the Owls are 89-77 overall and 53-52 in the AAC.

The Owls have had two really good years and three subpar seasons in the AAC. Dunphy was named the AAC coach of the year in consecutive seasons, 2015 and 2016.

Dunphy and McKie were not available for comment.

In other Temple basketball news, ESPN reports that Owls 6-8 sophomore Quinton Rose will enter the NBA draft, but won’t at this time hire an agent.

Rose started this season on fire and he had one particular NBA scout excited about his potential. Since then he was up and down. Rose averaged 14.9 points and shot 34.5 percent from three-point range.