Cal Poly Athletics Director Don Oberhelman held a press conference Sunday evening about the decision to not bring Joe Callero back as Men’s Basketball head coach, along with what lies ahead for the coaching search.
Oberhelman stated in Sunday evening’s press conference that the decision to not bring Callero back was based on a lack of improvement in win-loss record throughout his tenure. The Mustangs’ last winning season was in 2012-2013.
“I wanted to see improvement,” Oberhelman said. “We need to be in the hunt for titles and I’m not saying that we need to win a Big West title every single year. I want us to get back into the hunt. This was one more year where we weren’t.”
With one year left on Callero’s contract at the time of his firing, Oberhelman announced that Callero will receive a $137,000 buyout, or half of his yearly salary. The buyout will be absorbed by the Athletics Department’s salary budget.
Oberhelman will be in Las Vegas this week, which is the site of the Pac-12, West Coast Conference, Western Athletic Conference and Mountain West Conference tournaments. He acknowledged his intent to interview coaches from these conferences — both head coaches and assistants — but said they will be “pretty tight-lipped” in regards to who is in contention.
Nonetheless, Oberhelman indicated that the ideal candidate will not need to be sold on Cal Poly in spite of previous performance in seasons prior.
“The kind of coach we want wants this job badly,” Oberhelman said, reflecting on the similar mentality he had when he wanted to become Cal Poly’s athletic director. Oberhelman contrasted Cal Poly’s standards in recruiting, playing and academics to programs with “win-at-all-costs” mentalities.
“Our president [Jeffrey Armstrong] doesn’t want that. I don’t want that,” Oberhelman added. “The kind of coach we want doesn’t want that either.”