VESTAL, N.Y. - Binghamton University fired men's basketball coach Mark Macon on Monday and began a national search for a replacement.
Director of athletics Patrick Elliott made the announcement, saying the decision "comes after a thorough assessment of our current program and my expectations for the future."
"Mark Macon led the program during an extremely difficult period," Elliott, who took over as athletic director in November, said in a statement. "I appreciate and thank him for his efforts."
Macon, a star player at Temple, said he was "surprised" by the move. His contract went through February 2014.
"In this job, you're hired to be fired," Macon said in a telephone interview. "I don't hold any ill will toward Binghamton University. They gave me a great opportunity, and I'm just grateful to have had that chance. It was just amazing to get an opportunity to be a head coach."
Macon spent four years at Binghamton and compiled a 24-68 record in three seasons as head coach. He took over after Kevin Broadus was suspended for recruiting violations in October 2009 and eventually let go.
Macon also had been an assistant coach at Georgia State from 2006 to 2007 after three seasons as John Chaney's assistant at Temple.
Chaney told the Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin that he is angry the university fired Macon.
"I'm really disappointed in the university," Chaney said. "[They think] they'll probably bring in someone and give him more money and give him five years."