Cornell Athletics announced that Princeton associate head coach Brian Earl will be the 22nd head coach of the men’s basketball team on Monday. The move follows last month’s decision to part ways with former head coach Bill Courtney after six straight losing seasons.
“Brian Earl was chosen from a large pool of very qualified candidates to lead the Cornell basketball program to sustained success on the court and in the classroom,” Athletic Director Andy Noel said in a statement.
Earl, who primarily worked with the Tigers’ defense, coached at Princeton for nine years. The Tigers finished the 2015-16 season with a 12-2 record, good for second in the league. Earl joined the team in 2007-08 and helped the program improve its 6-23 overall record in his first year to 25-7 record in 2010-11.
Before his time as an assistant at Princeton, Earl played basketball for the Tigers, earning an Ivy League Player of the Year award his senior season. Earl also graduated as the conference’s most prolific 3-point shooter in history.
While as a player at Princeton, Earl guided the Tigers to three NCAA tournaments, including two second round trips. After graduating, Earl played in several pro basketball leagues in Europe and in the United States.
“Brian’s experience as a coach and record-setting player in the Ivy League has provided him with the skills and knowledge necessary to achieve success at Cornell,” Noel said. He is a strong X’s and O’s tactician who also excels at recruiting and skill development.”
In the statement, Noel praised Earl’s familiarity with the Ivy League’s unique academic focus.
“[Earl] also fully understands the challenges student-athletes face at an elite academic institution,” Noel said. “I could not be more excited for our players and fans regarding the future of Cornell basketball.”