The Jeff Capel file

Arizona State is targeting current Duke assistant and former Oklahoma head coach Jeff Capel for its coaching vacancy according to multiple sources as first reported by Scout.com and national analyst Evan Daniels. Why Capel? Answers inside.

On Tuesday morning, Arizona State parted ways with men's basketball head coach Herb Sendek, leaving the athletic department searching for his replacement.

As first reported by Scout.com, a top target has already emerged for the job, Duke associate head coach Jeff Capel, who was previously head coach at Oklahoma

Known as an elite recruiter for a head coach and a player's coach, Capel has had success on the sidelines, making the NCAA tournament at VCU and Oklahoma. He's also a member of USA Basketball and a respected figure in the basketball community.

Capel, who played for Duke from 1993-97, was VCU's head coach from 2002-06, compiling a 79-41 record and leading the Rams to a 79-41 record in four seasons, highlighted by an NCAA tournament berth in 2004.

In 2006, Capel was named head coach of Oklahoma, where he also had success after signing Blake Griffin, who helped lead the Sooners to back to back NCAA tournament appearances from 2007-09, including an Elite Eight in 2009.

Capel was fired from Oklahoma in March of 2011 in the midst of an NCAA investigation of the program, which later revealed that the school had committed two violations, neither of which Capel was implicated in.

He quickly landed back on his feet, taking an assistant position at Duke and was promoted as associate head coach in July of 2013. That same year he was added to USA Basketball Men's Senior Team staff, where he acted as a coach and scout.

While Capel's is still in the process of feeling out Arizona State and vice versa, his previous success as a coach, relationship and background with Duke and USA Basketball, ability as a recruiter and engaging personality would be seen as beneficial to the Sun Devil program externally and internally.

Capel would likely be able to retain the bulk of the Sun Devils' current players, signees and commits, while also opening up doors allowing the Arizona State program to successfully recruit at a level it hasn't in recent years. The Sun Devils are set to return four starts from this year's team that went 18-16 overall and 9-9 in Pac-12 regular season play.


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