Vanderbilt Welcomes Mark Byington as Head Coach: Former James Madison Coach Guides Dukes to Impressive 32-4 Season in 2023-24

Mark Byington: The Quick Rise and Fall of a College Basketball Coach on the Move

On Monday, the world of college basketball witnessed a flurry of coaching changes. First, Kyle Smith announced his departure from Stanford to pursue other opportunities. Then, Danny Sprinkle left Washington for a new challenge. But the most significant news came when James Madison coach Mark Byington was hired by Vanderbilt. Sources close to the situation confirmed this hire to CBS Sports.

The hiring of Byington came quickly, less than 18 hours after his James Madison team lost to Duke in the NCAA Tournament. Despite their defeat, the Dukes had an impressive season, finishing with a 32-4 record and being ranked 62nd at KenPom.com. Their tournament run started with a notable victory over Wisconsin, marking their first NCAA tournament win since 1983.

Under Byington’s leadership, JMU transformed into a strong mid-major program over the past four years, posting an impressive record of 82-36 and guiding them through a conference transition. This hire signifies the end of the coaching carousel for high-major programs as only Louisville, Oklahoma State, and SMU still have vacant head coaching positions.

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