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GSU fires men's basketball coach
Charlton Young released after 4 years
W 031213 CY file 04
Former Georgia Southern head basketball coach Charlton "CY" Young gives instructions during a timeout in the Eagles' victory over Davidson at Hanner Fieldhouse on Monday, Jan. 14. - photo by SCOTT BRYANT/file

   Charlton Young, Georgia Southern’s men’s head basketball coach for the past four seasons, was fired Monday afternoon after a meeting with GSU Athletics Director Tom Kleinlein.
    “At 6 p.m., (Monday), I had a meeting with Charlton Young … and decided that we needed to go in a different direction with our basketball program,” Kleinlein said at a press conference Tuesday morning. “Charlton and I met for approximately 20 minutes to discuss the future of our program, at which time I informed him that I felt we needed to go in a different direction.”
    The Eagles (14-19 in 2012-13) lost to Davidson in the quarterfinals of the Southern Conference tournament on Saturday. Young was 2-4 in SoCon tournament games at GSU. His overall record since taking over the program in 2009 is 43-84, 26-46 in SoCon play.
    In 2009, Young inherited a GSU program that was placed on two years of probation by the NCAA after academic misconduct was discovered in the program under the previous coaching staff.
    “Charlton Young represents Georgia Southern with the utmost character,” Kleinlein said. “He’s done a tremendous job taking over a program that had some trouble when he arrived, and getting it to a level of respectability. He does a great job in our community, does a great job with our players, does a great job with our organization. At the same time, I felt like where we need to go is beyond where we are right now, so I felt a change in leadership is what we needed to do.”
    Kleinlein said the program will begin a national search for Young’s replacement, beginning immediately.
    “Our coaches are the CEOs of their programs,” Kleinlein said. “Their job is to make their programs as good as they can be in every aspect of their program, whether that’s socially, academically or performance on the field. What I’m looking for is somebody who’s going to come in here, embrace that opportunity and understand what that role of being a CEO is.”
    Kleinlein was asked if Hanner Fieldhouse, GSU’s basketball facility which was built in 1969 when the program moved to Division I, was a hurdle an incoming coach would have to overcome.
    “I think all of our coaches at this level have different disadvantages,” Kleinlein said. No program in America has exactly what they want, even the guys at the BCS level. … The facility is an issue with basketball, and that’s something that we’ll work to fix. At the same time, when you’re the leader of the program, you can’t rely on that as an excuse for poor performance or an excuse for not developing a nationally respected program.”
    Young leaves the program with three years left on his contract, for which GSU will be financially responsible. Kleinlein did not disclose further details.
    “Charlton has a financial agreement that will guarantee his salary for three years beyond where he is at right now. Other than that, his arrangements that I have with him, or any discussions I have about his (finances) are between myself and his representative,” Kleinlein said.
    Kleinlein said the decision to release Young was not made until the season came to an end.
    “For me, that decision’s not made and wasn’t being thought about until the season was over. When the season was over, I sat down and began to analyze where we were at and where we needed to go,” he said.

    Matt Yogus may be reached at (912) 489-9408.

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