The University of Cincinnati’s (UC) men’s basketball coach has been suspended pending the outcome of a university review, multiple media outlets reported Saturday.
John Brannen has been placed on administrative leave with pay just eight days after UC Athletic Director John Cunningham announced the university would review allegations surrounding Brannen and the men’s basketball program, according to a report from the Cincinnati Enquirer.
The News Record has reached out to officials in the athletics department for comment but has yet to receive a response.
In recent weeks, six players have entered the NCAA’s transfer portal, leaving the program’s entire roster comprised of four scholarship athletes and a walk-on.
Most notably in the portal are young stand-outs Tari Eason, Mike Saunders Jr and Zach Harvey. Eason was named to the American Athletic Conference (AAC) all-freshman team, Saunders started more than half of the Bearcats games this season and Harvey was a top-75 recruit coming out of high school.
The Athletic recently reported that the mass exodus of players was the result of “an untenable culture within the program caused by feelings of manipulation and exclusion and a lack of trust with Brannen.”
Brannen was hired onto the program in 2019 to replace Mick Cronin as its head men's basketball coach, following Cronin’s decision to leave UC for the University of California, Los Angeles.
Brannen was previously the head coach of the men’s basketball program at Northern Kentucky University.
The News Record will update this story as more information becomes available.