Tigers add Butler assistant Meyer to coaching staff

Friday, June 25, 2004

COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Missouri hired Butler assistant Jeff Meyer to fill the last vacancy on Quin Snyder's basketball staff, an opening created by a resignation prompted by an NCAA investigation.

"I'm excited," Meyer said Thursday. "I share his mission of representing the University of Missouri with excellence and integrity.

"We're going to graduate kids. We're going to compete for championships. The foundation's solid."

With Meyer on staff, Missouri now has a more experienced coaching lineup than last season, with nearly three decades of combined head coaching experience on the bench.

Meyer spent 16 years as the head coach at Liberty University in Virginia. The newly hired associate head coach, Melvin Watkins, 49, adds eight years as Texas A&M's head coach to Snyder's five-year tenure at Missouri.

"Right now, we're ready to go," Snyder said. Of all the prospective assistants he interviewed, Snyder said, "I've got the two best."

Meyer, 50, succeeds Lane Odom, who resigned the same day Missouri officials announced details of a formal notice of allegations of violating NCAA rules.

Odom was accused of several recruiting violations, as was former associate head coach Tony Harvey, who resigned recently. Snyder also was accused in the notice of recruiting violations and "failing at all times" to maintain an atmosphere of rules compliance.

Missouri has until July 1 to formally respond to the NCAA. A hearing by the NCAA infractions committee is scheduled for August.

Meyer said he was "keenly aware" of the unresolved NCAA investigation, but after talking with Snyder, "I feel very, very comfortable, and I am excited."

Meyer was an assistant coach at Butler, a private college in Indianapolis, for three seasons.

After leaving Liberty, where he compiled a 259-206 record, Meyer was associate head coach for three years at Winthrop. He started his coaching career in 1978 as an assistant at Purdue.

Marcus Perez is Snyder's only assistant who is to return this season.

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