There has been no official confirmation that Ben Howland has been fired, but multiple media outlets are reporting that Howland has already been contacted and told he was being let go. Since we first highlighted a very interesting tweet by Alex Kline at The Recruit Scoop earlier this afternoon, additional writers have indicated that it's already a done deal (HT to the various posters who posted the links in the original thread). First, here is more information from The Recruit Scoop:
Multiple sources said Howland would not be retained but the UCLA athletic department was looking to keep second-year assistant coach Korey McCray on board.
McCray, the lead recruiter for the staff, was instrumental in the recruitment of current players Tony Parker, Jordan Adams and others, as well as the 2013 recruiting class.
"A staff member just called me about an hour ago," one source said when informed of the plan to terminate Howland's contract. "It should be interesting who they bring in. They said [VCU head coach] Shaka [Smart] is the No. 1 candidate."
After, Jeff Eisenberg at Yahoo! Sports hit the following interesting note on Twitter:
Along with @spearsnbayahoo, Y! Sports reports that UCLA coach Ben Howland has been notified that he has been fired, two sources confirmed.— Jeff Eisenberg (@JeffEisenberg) March 24, 2013
Shortly after, Adam Zagoria at Zagsblog posted the following:
Ben Howland will be fired as the head coach of UCLA, with an official announcement coming possibly as early as Sunday, a source with direct knowledge confirmed to SNY.tv.
Shaka Smart, Brad Stevens, Mark Gottfried, Billy Donovan and Jay Wright are on UCLA’s wish list, the source said.
Fire away with information as it breaks and stay tuned as we try to keep up with this rapidly developing situation in Westwood following UCLA's collapse in the first round against a decidedly mediocre Minnesota squad.