Jamie Dixon emerges as leading candidate for UCLA job

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The UCLA Bruins might have had their eyes set on Kentucky’s John Calipari to replace the recently fired Steve Alford. But that appears to be dead after the Wildcats offered their long-time head coach a lifetime contract.

It’s now being reported by Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times that Texas Christian’s Jamie Dixon has joined Cincinnati’s Mick Cronin as a leading candidate for the Bruins’ job.

“UCLA officials have narrowed their focus on Texas Christian’s Jamie Dixon and Cincinnati’s Mick Cronin in the search to fill their basketball coaching vacancy after striking out with a slew of top targets,” the report read.

Dixon, 53, is the headliner here. He’s served as the TCU head coach each of the past three seasons — leading the program to the NCAA Tournament in 2018.

Prior to that, Dixon served as the Pittsburgh head coach for 13 seasons. He led that program to a whopping 11 tourney appearances.

As it relates to Cronin, he’s been the Bearcats’ head coach for the past 13 seasons and has led the program to the tourney each of the past nine seasons.