Former Texas basketball assistant KT Turner joins OU

KT Turner, Texas Basketball Mandatory Credit: Ricardo B. Brazziell/American-Statesman via USA TODAY NETWORK
KT Turner, Texas Basketball Mandatory Credit: Ricardo B. Brazziell/American-Statesman via USA TODAY NETWORK /

Back on March 26, the Texas basketball program had to start their coaching search to replace the now former sixth-year head coach Shaka Smart. On that day, Smart bolted from Austin to take the head coaching job with the Marquette Golden Eagles in his home state of Wisconsin to replace the recently departed Steve Wojciechowski.

After the departure of Smart following the end to a disappointing March Madness for the Longhorns, it was assumed that most of the coaching staff would land elsewhere too. And a lot of those dominos are starting to fall of late as other coaching staffs are constructed around the college hoops landscape.

One key assistant from Smart’s staff last season that recently found himself a new home is KT Turner. According to a report on the Twitter timeline of Stadium’s Jeff Goodman on the afternoon of April 5, Turner was hired by the rival Oklahoma Sooners to join their coaching staff along with newly hired head coach Porter Moser.

This will be the third different coaching staff that hired Turner within the last three years. Prior to landing the job with the Texas staff last offseason, he was a longtime assistant coach on staff with the SMU Mustangs in the American Athletic Conference.

Prior coaching run of former Texas basketball assistant KT Turner

Turner was also called on to coach one game for the Longhorns this past season when Smart came down with a positive COVID-19 test. That one game where Turner was the de facto Longhorns head coach was ironically against Oklahoma in late January.

Prior to holding the SMU assistant job from 2013-2019, Turner was an assistant coach with the Wichita State Shockers for two years.

Turner became known for being a good in-game assistant coach and basketball mind, along with a very good recruiter. He brought key talents such as former talented four-star point guard recruit and SMU star Shake Milton into the Mustangs program. Turner also landed former four-star recruit and Athens, TX, native point guard Tyson Jolly.

The addition of Turner should be valuable to the Sooners coaching staff, now under the direction of the former Loyola-Chicago head coach Moser.

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Oklahoma saw longtime head coach Lon Kruger retire entering this offseason. Both Oklahoma and Texas have undergone significant coaching staff overhauls early this offseason. Texas hired former Texas Tech Red Raiders head coach Chris Beard to replace Smart back on April 1.