Bender to be replaced

Two sources very close to the UW basketball program, as well as local Sports Radio Station KJR and Fox Sports Net Northwest television are reporting this evening that Bob Bender, head coach at the University of Washington for the past nine seasons, will step down tomorrow.

Fox employees reported that the coach met with his team this evening and broke the news to them that he would no longer be their coach.

Bender had some success at Washington, leading them twice deep into the NCAA tournament, both times into the "sweet sixteen."

However a 31-58 record over the past three seasons, combined with the $40 Million the school spent on renovating Hec-Edmundson Pavilion, proved to be too much to overcome.

There was loose speculation before this move that Tacoma products CJ Massingale and Curtis Allen would transfer after this season. Also, sophomore Doug Wrenn, the team's top scorer, was on record earlier this year as a staunch supporter of Bob Bender.

It will be interesting to see what player reactions will be, but Washington has the resources to hire a big name coach, but it likely won't be Quinn Snyder, current Missouri coach. Despite being a local product (Mercer Island), Snyder makes $1.2 million per year and a brand new facility was just built for him and his team.

No word on any candidates at this time.

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