Head basketball coach will not return for new season

North Alabama men’s head basketball coach Bobby Champagne issues orders to his team against West Florida Feb. 16, 2017 in Flowers Hall. Athletic director Mark Linder announced Monday that Champagne’s contract will not be renewed for the following season.

by Associate Sports Editor Hunter Anderson

North Alabama’s Bobby Champagne will not return as the men’s head basketball coach.

Athletic Director Mark Linder announced Monday that Champagne’s contract will not be renewed for the following season.

“I met with Bobby (Champagne) this afternoon and notified him that his contract was not going to be renewed,” Linder said in a press release. “I thank Coach Champagne for his service to the University of North Alabama and the Shoals area. I wish him well in his future endeavors.”

Champagne led the team for 15 seasons, taking over the role of head coach in 2003.

During his tenure at UNA, Champagne coached 19 All Conference players, eight All-Region players, three All-GSC Tournament players, five Academic All-GSC performers, six 1,000-point scorers and four NABC All-Star participants, according to UNA’s sports information website roarlions.com. Of the 55 players who completed their eligibility while playing for Champagne, 37 earned their undergraduate degree sixty-seven percent and three earned their master’s degree,

Champagne had a 245-195 record in addition to his 58-57 mark over the last four seasons, according to the press release.

Linder said the search for a new men’s basketball coach will begin immediately.

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