Gottfried silent about OSU job

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 26, 2004

The Associated Press

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - University of Alabama men's basketball coach Mark Gottfried declined to say if he has been contacted by Ohio State officials about that school's coaching vacancy.

''It is my belief that it isn't appropriate to discuss any job other than the one I have, which by the way is one I really like,'' Gottfried told the Tuscaloosa News. ''I've been in similar situations in the past few years, and it is my position not to talk publicly about it.''

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Gottfried, who was in Tuscaloosa all day Friday and made several stops at the Mark Gottfried Basketball Camp going on throughout the weekend, had declined to comment for two days on the Ohio State issue. He played golf with Alabama football coach Mike Shula on Thursday morning at Shoal Creek in Birmingham, then spoke at a function in Murray, Ky., before returning to Tuscaloosa on Thursday night.

Gottfried, 40, is a Crestline, Ohio, native who is fresh from guiding Alabama to a 20-13 record and a berth in the NCAA Tournament Elite Eight, where the Crimson Tide lost to eventual national champion Connecticut.

Asked Wednesday if Ohio State officials had spoken to Gottfried, Buckeyes athletic director Andy Geiger declined to answer. Athletic department spokesman Steve Snapp said later, ''We have not offered the position to anybody.''

Snapp was asked if Geiger had talked to Gottfried. He said, ''The answer would be no. He has not been in contact with him.''

The opening was created when Jim O'Brien was fired June 8 after Geiger said O'Brien admitted he had given $6,000 to a recruit in 1999.