COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — Retired Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has been elected chairman of USA Basketball.
Dempsey replaces Jerry Colangelo, who held the position for two terms but will now focus on his role as managing director of the U.S. men’s national team.
Dempsey was elected Monday during a meeting of USA Basketball’s board of directors. His term is 2017-2020.
He retired last year after 41 years in the military, the last four as the senior officer in the Armed Forces and the military adviser to the secretary of defense and the president. He was appointed special adviser to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver in January.
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Jerry Colangelo won’t seek a third term as chairman of USA Basketball, instead focusing on his role as managing director of the men’s national team program.
Colangelo said Thursday that he will concentrate on the transition from coach Mike Krzyzewski to Gregg Popovich and building the player pool for the competition cycle through the 2020 Olympics.
He is the only person to serve two terms as chairman. USA Basketball’s board of directors will elect a new chairman at its annual meeting on Nov. 14.
“Given the coaching change and the challenge of assembling a group of players for (the International Basketball Federation’s) new competition schedule, this is a good time to devote my full attention to the men’s national team,” Colangelo said in a news release.
Under changes made by basketball’s governing body, the Americans will have to qualify for the 2019 Basketball World Cup in China over a two-year cycle during 2017-18. The World Cup will then serve as the qualifier for the Tokyo Games.
The Americans won gold again in men’s and women’s basketball in Rio de Janeiro and are 267-6 since Colangelo began overseeing the organization in 2009. The U.S. is also ranked No. 1 in the world at the boys and girls levels.
Colangelo began his role as national team director in 2005 and was elected to his first term as chairman after the American men won the gold medal in the 2008 Olympics. The men have won 53 straight games in major international competitions.
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Mike Krzyzewski said he has “every intention” of coaching the U.S. men’s basketball team at the Rio Olympics in a statement Thursday.
Krzyzewski, 69, and USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo issued clarifying statements one day after a report was published saying Colangelo said he mulled possible Rio replacements for Krzyzewski due to health issues.
“I fully expect Coach K to lead the 2016 U.S. Olympic team in Rio,” Colangelo said in the Thursday statement. “At no time have coach and I ever discussed him not coaching the USA national team this summer. I remain 100 percent convinced that there is no better coach to lead the U.S.”
Krzyzewski is in line to become the oldest U.S. Olympic basketball coach ever in August, which would be his third Games at the helm of the U.S.
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich will take over for Krzyzewski after the Rio Olympics, USA Basketball announced Oct. 23.
Krzyzewski’s assistants on the Rio Olympic team are Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, former Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau and Thunder assistant Monty Williams.
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