Eastern Washington promotes David Riley to head job

CHENEY, Wash. — Eastern Washington promoted David Riley to head basketball coach Thursday following the school’s NCAA Tournament appearance.

Riley will replace Shantay Legans, who left Eastern Washington this week to take over as the head coach at Portland. Riley has been with the Eagles’ program for the past decade in a variety of roles.

“The past 10 years at EWU have been an incredible journey and I am grateful to all the current and former players who helped put me in this position,” Riley said.

Riley, 32, will inherit an Eagles program that won the Big Sky Conference tournament title to claim the league’s automatic bid to the NCAAs. As a No. 14 seed, the Eagles then put a major scare into No. 3 seed Kansas before the Jayhawks pulled away late in the second half.

Riley joined Eastern Washington in 2011 after playing and graduating from nearby Whitworth. Riley’s first role was as the director of basketball operations. He’s spent the past seven seasons as an assistant, first for former coach Jim Hayford and then the past four seasons with Legans.

Riley is the nephew of former NFL and college football coach Mike Riley.

“David has been an integral part of Eagle basketball for years and so he understands the culture and the potential that this program has,” athletic director Lynn Hickey said. “He is a very bright young coach who has a tremendous work ethic and a heart for Eastern Washington University.”

More AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/College-basketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25