Molinari confirms move to Nebraska

2014-04-11T07:28:00Z 2014-04-11T09:52:07Z Molinari confirms move to NebraskaBy BRIAN ROSENTHAL / Lincoln Journal Star JournalStar.com

Nebraska basketball coach Tim Miles has his new assistant coach.

Jim Molinari resigned Thursday night as coach at Western Illinois, and then confirmed to local media he's headed to Lincoln to join Miles' coaching staff.

"I think that I wasn't looking for an opportunity, but I really think the Lord opened this door," Molinari told the Peoria Journal Star. "I know Tim Miles and I don't pick places, I pick people. I'm buying into him and his vision and trying to continue what they've done there.

"With that said, this is the most difficult basketball decision I've ever made."

Molinari went 79-104 in six seasons at Western Illinois, which finished 10-20 this season. He had two years remaining on his initial eight-year contract.

Molinari led the Leathernecks to the Summit League regular-season championship in 2013 and to appearances in the College Basketball Invitational in 2012 and 2013, the school's first postseason appearances as a Division I member.

Molinari is 302-290 overall as a head coach through 20 seasons, with stops at Northern Illinois, Bradley and Minnesota, where he served as an interim coach after spending two seasons as a Gophers assistant coach.

He replaces Craig Smith, who left Nebraska to become head coach at South Dakota.

Reach the writer at brosenthal@journalstar.com.

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