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College Basketball: Mullins in mix at St. John's

Former all-American Chris Mullin has been offered the head coaching job at his alma mater, St. John's, ESPN reported Sunday.

Former all-American Chris Mullin has been offered the head coaching job at his alma mater, St. John's, ESPN reported Sunday.

The Red Storm and coach Steve Lavin parted ways on Friday. Lavin coached five seasons at St. John's, where the Red Storm made two NCAA tournament appearances.

Mullin was drafted seventh overall in 1985 by Golden State and played in the NBA from 1985-2001 for the Warriors and the Indiana Pacers.

He has also been a member of the front office for both the Sacramento Kings and the Warriors following his retirement.

Rick Barnes out

Fired Texas basketball coach Rick Barnes says the athletic director told him a week ago he'd return for another season, but "some things changed."

At a farewell news conference, Barnes insisted he's not bitter about the dismissal. But he said he was "shocked" by what he said were athletic department leaks to the media in recent days that he was being pressured to fire his assistant coaches to save his own job.

Barnes says several staff members offered to quit but he refused. He said he didn't want to give up control over his staff.

Athletic director Steve Patterson did not attend the news conference. The school said in a statement the two sides parted by mutual consent. Barnes said he told Patterson he wanted to stay.

He had four years left on his contract and is due a severance payment of $1.75 million.

Leitao returns

The most recent time DePaul reached the NCAA tournament, Dave Leitao was the coach.

Leitao, who coached DePaul from 2002-05, was brought back to lead the men's basketball program.

Leitao, who led the Blue Demons to three postseason appearances and the NCAAs in 2004 in his first stint, left DePaul to take over at Virginia. He was there for four years and was Atlantic Coast Conference coach of the year in his second season.

He was an assistant to Frank Haith the past three seasons at Missouri and Tulsa.

Before coaching DePaul, Leitao was associate head coach to Jim Calhoun at UConn for six seasons, including the 1999 NCAA championship. He was head coach at Northeastern from 1994-96.

In nine seasons as a head coach, Leitao holds a record of 143-129, including 58-34 in his first time at DePaul. The Blue Demons were 30-18 in Conference USA during his tenure but have been in decline since then, struggling in the Big East.

He replaces Oliver Purnell who resigned this month after leading the Blue Demons to a 54-105 record in his five seasons, including a 15-75 mark in the Big East. The school ultimately wound up going with a familiar face rather than an up-and-coming coach.