National writer says Lansing unlikely to be back at ISU

Indiana State head coach Greg Lansing is seen on the sidelines during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Missouri State in the quarterfinal round of the Missouri Valley Conference men's tournament Friday, March 6, 2020, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

On Sunday, the uncertain future of Indiana State men's basketball coach Greg Lansing reached a national audience.

Jeff Goodman, basketball insider for Stadium.com — Goodman previously had the same position at ESPN, CBS Sports and Fox Sports — tweeted that Lansing is unlikely to return as the Sycamores' coach when his contract runs out on March 31.

"Indiana State coach Greg Lansing is unlikely to return after the season, sources told @stadium. The administration prefers to move on despite fact that Lansing is two wins shy of all-time winningest coach in school history and Sycamores are 14-9 overall this season," Goodman's tweet stated.

When reached Sunday afternoon by the Tribune-Star, Lansing had no comment on the Goodman tweet.

ISU Director of Athletics Sherard Clinkscales was also reached. Clinkscales said that he will not discuss a coach's contract during an active season and also said that no decision has made been on Lansing's future.

Clinkscales said he supports Lansing and the team and is excited about seeing them at the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament starting on Friday in St. Louis.

Lansing's contract had been on a five-year rollover after an agreement was signed by the previous athletic administration after the 2012 season. The rollover was canceled after the 2017 season after Lansing had his third consecutive losing campaign.

The losing season streak would reach five before ISU's fortunes turned in the final two years of Lansing's contract. ISU finished 18-12 in 2020 and in a tie for third in the MVC. In 2021, ISU is 14-9 and 11-7 in the MVC, good for fourth place.

Lansing has a career record of 180-153 at ISU. Lansing is two wins shy of Duane Klueh's school-record win total of 182. If ISU gets to the MVC Tournament championship game, Lansing will match Klueh's total.

Lansing is 102-96 in Missouri Valley Conference games, one of just 11 coaches to reach the century mark in MVC wins since the league was founded in 1906 and the only one in ISU's history to do so. Lansing has 33 more MVC wins than any ISU coach since the Sycamores joined the league full-time for the 1976-77 season.

Lansing's history is very unique in college basketball circles. Lansing, who took over as head coach for Kevin McKenna in the summer of 2010 after McKenna departed to be an assistant coach at Oregon, had four winning seasons to start his ISU career. He followed that with five losing seasons, followed by the two winning seasons with the current squad.

Among current Missouri Valley Conference schools, the only coach in their Division I histories who has ever had five losing seasons followed by winning ones is Valparaiso's Homer Drew. The first five seasons of Drew's tenure were losing campaigns, followed by 14 winning seasons out of the next 17 he coached.

No coach among current MVC schools has ever had four winning seasons followed by five losing ones followed by more winning seasons.

Lansing told the Tribune-Star before the season he would address his contract situation once and then not discuss it.

"I've addressed it with the guys. There's no white elephant in the room. We've had some emotional discussions about things like that and many other things in our society. It's something I'm not going to talk about other than right now. We're going to move forward and try to have a great season," Lansing said in a Dec. 4, 2020 Tribune-Star story.

ISU begins the MVC Tournament at 3 p.m. Friday when it plays No. 5 seed Evansville.

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Todd Aaron Golden has been Sports Editor and Indiana State beat writer since September 2004. Born in Milwaukee but an Indiana resident most of his adult life, he previously worked in Jeffersonville, Columbus and Eau Claire, Wis.

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