CLEMSON -- Larry Shyatt’s run as Clemson’s basketball coach ended Monday evening when he resigned after five seasons at the helm.
Shyatt came to Clemson in 1998 after the resignation of Rick Barnes, who abruptly left to take over at Texas in April 1998. Shyatt came in from Wyoming, where he served as head coach for one season after being an assistant to Barnes for 9 years.
Shyatt was thought of as Barnes’ chief recruiter during the duo’s time at Clemson. Shyatt was responsible for bringing Terrell McIntyre to Clemson and was regarded as a players’ coach during his days as an assistant.
Shyatt never lost that label as a players coach, but the wins didn’t follow.
Shyatt was only able to take Clemson to one post-season tournament in five seasons. That post-season tournament came during his first season when the Tigers advanced to the finals of the NIT against California. That senior-laden team had high hopes going into the season, but finished eighth in the ACC and had to settle for the NIT.
Four straight seasons of no post season play and five straight seasons of ACC tournament play-in games ultimately led to Shyatt’s resignation, which came a day after his team was snubbed by the NIT despite a 15-13 record. Problems with Littlejohn Coliseum plagued his last two years at Clemson. Littlejohn was refurbished and an annex was added with additional practice facilities. However, a new roof on the coliseum caused the first nine games of this season to be played at the Anderson Civic Center. New seats being placed in the coliseum caused the University to call off any hopes of the team playing a post-season NIT game there. Another run through the NIT was the last remaining hope to save Shyatt, but the NIT decided against inviting the Tigers to play in the tournament.
Shyatt compiled a 70-84 record at Clemson. His team’s win over No. 1 North Carolina in 2001 will be remembered for years to come. However, the next game Clemson lost by 32 to Wake Forest at home. It was that kind of inconsistency that marked Shyatt’s career.
Shyatt is the first Clemson coach to leave with a losing overall record since Tates Locke ended his career at Clemson in 1975 with a 62-70 overall record.
On Tuesday audio from Clemson AD Terry Don Phillips and Larry Shyatt live on Dan Scott's SportsTalk on WCCP-Fm, 104.9. Click here for Dan Scott's SportsTalk discussion board.