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Sources: St. John’s, Anderson working on deal

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Sources: St. John’s, Anderson working on deal
10:26 PM ET

  • Jeff BorzelloESPN Staff Writer

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    • Basketball recruiting insider.
    • Joined ESPN in 2014.
    • Graduate of University of Delaware.

Former Arkansas coach Mike Anderson is in negotiations to become the next head coach for St. John’s, sources confirmed to ESPN.

Anderson, 59, emerged as the favorite on Thursday night, according to sources. Yale’s James Jones and former George Mason and Georgia Tech head coach Paul Hewitt were among the other coaches in consideration.

Newsday was first to report that Anderson would be headed to St. John’s.

The job has proven difficult to fill after Chris Mullin stepped down as coach earlier in the month. The school’s first choice to replace Mullin, Arizona State head coach Bobby Hurley, decided to stay in Tempe and signed a contract extension. St. John’s then pursued Loyola Chicago’s Porter Moser, but Moser turned down the Red Storm after visiting the Queens campus and having an interview. Iona’s Tim Cluess withdrew his name from consideration on Thursday morning.

Anderson was fired by Arkansas last month after eight seasons as head coach of the Razorbacks. During his time in Fayetteville, Anderson led Arkansas to the NCAA tournament three times. Prior to taking over at Arkansas, Anderson spent five seasons at Missouri, with which he went to three NCAA tournaments — including an Elite Eight run in 2009. Anderson also was the head coach at UAB for four seasons, winning at least 20 games in all four seasons and advancing to the NCAA tournament three times.

The Birmingham, Alabama, native began his coaching career as an assistant coach under Nolan Richardson, first at Tulsa, his alma mater, for three seasons, and then at Arkansas for 17 seasons.

Anderson would replace Mullin, who stepped down from his position earlier this month. Mullin, the greatest player in program history, was in charge of the Red Storm for four seasons. He led St. John’s to an NCAA tournament appearance this season, his first since taking over as head coach, but the Red Storm lost in the First Four to Arizona State.

Following the season, Mullin had multiple contentious meetings with athletic director Mike Cragg, leading to speculation on his job status. Mullin announced his resignation the day after the national championship game.

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