Less that 24 hours after their collapsing loss to Richmond, the Rhode Island Rams have fired men’s head basketball coach David Cox. Cox, who was in his fourth season as head coach, led Rhode Island to a 15-16 record overall and a 5-12 record in the A10 this season, good for 11th place, which was Rhode Island’s worst finish in the A10 since 2013 where they finished 3-13 .
Over his four seasons with the Rams, Cox’s record was 64-55 overall and 34-36 in A10 play. His best year as coach was back in 2019-2020 where the Rams finished 21-9 overall and 13-5 in A10 play. That season was the closest to an NCAA Tournament bid that Rhode Island has come to over Cox’s tenure. The Rams did not make the NCAA Tournament or NIT during his four years as coach. The last appearance in the big dance for Rhode Island was in 2017-2018 when Dan Hurley was the head man.
Looking metrically at Rhode Island over the past four years, the Rams only finished with a top 100 KenPom ranking once, in 2020. Besides that, the Rams never finished about #111 and finished as low as #142 in their first season with Cox. This season’s team finished at #133.
Last night’s comeback win by Richmond over Rhode Island was the icing on the cake that was the David Cox era in Kingston. Rhody fans have seen that same story over and over during the David Cox era, and it was finally time to move on. Cox should land on his feet somewhere as an assistant coach in college basketball. That seems to be the consensus good fit for him, with possibly a fresh head coaching stint somewhere down the road.
The current players on Rhode Island reportedly loved and looked up to Cox. They liked playing for him and bought into the program and culture that he build in his time in Kingston. We do wish him the best in his future endeavors.
Now, a new era in Rhode Island Basketball begins.
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Photo credit: @PeteyBuckets