Courtside

Your Guide to GW sports

Tuesday, July 19, 2011 2:11 p.m.

Karl Hobbs returns to University of Connecticut

Karl Hobbs came to GW from UConn in 2001. The Huskies rehired the former head coach only three months after Hobbs was unexpectedly fired from GW. File Photo

Updated 4:12 p.m.

Karl Hobbs has gone home.

The University of Connecticut has rehired the former GW men’s basketball head coach to serve as the director of men’s basketball administration for the Huskies. Hobbs was an assistant coach for UConn from 1993 to 2001, when he took to the sidelines for GW.

“I am blessed with the opportunity to work with such incredible coaches, administrators and student-athletes,” Hobbs said. “I consider everyone at UConn to be family to me and I take great pride in returning under the tutelage of such a phenomenal Hall of Famer and mentor in Coach [Jim] Calhoun. I credit coach for so much of the success that I have had in my career and to be back working for him is a thrill.”

While Hobbs was at UConn, the Huskies earned five Big East Regular Season titles, three Big East Tournament crowns and the 1999 NCAA National Championship.

The University released the 10-season coach from his contract in April. At the time, University administrators said GW would “honor” Hobbs’ contract through its completion  – a sign that GW will continue to pay Hobbs’ salary – around $500,000 per year – until his contract expires in 2012.

University spokeswoman Candace Smith declined to comment Tuesday as to if GW would continue to pay Hobbs for the remainder of his contract, citing “personnel matters.”

The Colonials are coming off of their best season in the past four years after Hobbs led his team to a 17-14 overall record and a 10-6 mark in Atlantic 10 play, good enough for a tie for fourth place in the final conference standings. GW closed the season on a down note though, losing in the first round of the conference tournament to 12th seeded Saint Joseph’s.

Hobbs’ decade-long tenure at GW was marked by a series of highs and lows for the men’s basketball team. The Colonials finished with losing records in both of Hobbs’ first two seasons, but the program began its surge to the top of the conference in his third season with a trip to the NIT in 2004.  The team made the NCAA Tournament three consecutive times in 2005, 2006 and 2007 before falling on hard times, finishing in 13th place in the 14 team Atlantic 10 in 2008 and 2009.