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September 21, 2023

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Men’s basketball coach to leave University

What has been talked about and debated all season became official this week, as head men’s basketball coach Louis Orr will not have his contract renewed by the University.

The Athletic Department sent out a press release announcing the coaching change this past Tuesday, the day after the Falcons lost to Northern Illinois University in the first round of the Mid-American Conference Tournament by a score of 54-51.

“If I can trust God with my soul then I can trust him with my future … and I can trust him with these young men,” Orr said. “I am thankful for the opportunities Bowling Green State University has given me. I’m thankful for the community, whatever their feelings were about me, I’m thankful for them coming out and supporting these guys. We all want more … I want these guys to experience more wins, they work hard and I want them to experience more championships. I wish I could have gave more on that end.”

In Orr’s seven years as the Falcon’s head coach he compiled a 101-121 record and a 54-60 record in the Mid-American Conference, but was given a two-year contract extension after the 2008 to 2009 season. In that season, the Falcons ended with a record of 19-14, along with earning the school’s first MAC regular-season championship since the 1999 to 2000 season. They earned a bid to the National Invitational Tournament but lost in the first round to Creighton.

In the five seasons since that championship year the Falcons have had sub-.500 records in four of them, including this season when the Falcons finished 12-20. The 2011 to 2012 year was the exception of those five years where they finished with a record of 16-16. That year they lost in the first round of the Tournament.

“We want to thank coach Orr for his dedication to BGSU and his leadership in developing men of character in the Falcon basketball program,” Athletic Director Chris Kingston said in a press release sent out by the Athletic Department. “I want to personally thank coach Orr for his professionalism and wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.”

Before Orr came to BG he spent 13 seasons as a head coach at other schools. He compiled some good seasons at Siena College and Seton Hall, including a 20-11 record in one season at Siena as well as a 80-69 record in five seasons at Seton Hall.

The national search for the next men’s basketball coach will begin immediately, but there is no timetable for the hire, said Kevin Davis, assistant director for athletic communications.

The search for a basketball coach at this time will take longer than the search for the new football coach did. The season is still going on for most teams as the Conference Tournament’s just ended but the national tournaments have yet to begin.

“Coach Orr is a great guy and one of the best coaches I have ever played with,” junior Jehvon Clarke said after the team’s season-ending loss to Northern Illinois during spring break. “Coming in my freshman year and not playing a lot we bumped heads a lot, I just didn’t understand. But, I have always loved coach Orr he is more than a coach to me; he is a father figure.”

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