MEN’S BASKETBALL: Former Lamar assistant placed on leave at Arkansas school

Published 11:07 pm Sunday, January 13, 2019

Former Lamar men’s basketball assistant coach Justin Bailey was placed on administrative leave as head coach at Division II University of Arkansas at Fort Smith, pending a review of information.

KFSM-TV in Fort Smith and the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette in Little Rock reported on the development.

Bailey, who was an assistant coach at Lamar from 2016-18, was placed on paid leave Jan. 8, according to the TV station. UAFS (7-9, 1-3 in Heartland Conference) has since beaten Oklahoma Christian University 92-70 and lost to Newman University of Kansas 78-63.

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“Effective (Tuesday), the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith has placed head men’s basketball coach Justin Bailey on paid administrative leave pending a review of information that has been brought to the university’s attention,” read the statement issued to KFSM. “In the interim, Athletic Director Curtis Janz will assume coaching duties. Because this is a personnel matter, the University is unable to provide further information.”

Bailey’s coaching biography is still posted on UAFS’ athletic website. The UAFS graduate is a native of Fort Smith and was an assistant men’s basketball and head men’s cross country coach before joining the Lamar staff in June 2016. Lamar posted two 19-win seasons with Bailey’s tutelage. UAFS named him head coach this past June.

About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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