The Illawarra Hawks have parted ways with head coach Jacob Jackomas with immediate effect after a disappointing 16 months in charge of the team.
- The Illawarra Hawks have sacked head coach Jacob Jackomas after a poor start to NBL season
- Hawks general manager Matt Campbell says the team’s performances have not met the club’s expectations
- Assistant coach Justin Tatum will take over on an interim basis
Jackomas took over the Hawks ahead of the 2022/23 NBL season after serving as assistant to legendary coach Brian Goorjian for more than a decade.
But Jackomas has managed to lead the team to just five wins in 37 games since taking over.
After just two wins from their opening nine games, Hawks general manager Matt Campbell said the club took action.
“The long history we have as a club revolves around being competitive and at the end of the day we are a professional basketball team that is assessed based on the wins and losses,” he said.
“We wanted to make a change before the season was lost.”
The club thanked Jackomas for his service to the team.
Hawks chief executive officer Stu Taggart said the club wanted to build a franchise “focused on sustained performance and success”.
“The leadership of the team and the direction the team is taking are the responsibilities of the head coach, and the club must take a different path now, without delay,” Mr Taggart said.
New assistant coach Justin Tatum, father of NBA player Jayson Tatum, will take over as interim head coach while the Hawks search for a replacement.
Worst season on record
Jackomas was passed the torch from his mentor Goorjian after the NBL’s most successful coach led the Hawks to consecutive finals appearances.
It proved a difficult season for the rookie coach, who was forced to navigate injuries to key players, including marquee Justin Robinson.
The Hawks finished bottom of the ladder after securing just three wins across the 28-game season, the worst record in the franchise’s history.
“The carry over from last year is real,” Campbell said.
“It is real with the playing group and it is real with the coaching staff that were part of last season’s struggles.
“We want to see a group of players who actually want to play, not just for the coach but for the Illawarra as well.”
Hawks eye serial winner
The Hawks have already started the process of finding Jackomas’s successor, but the club has not put a timeline on making a decision.
Campbell said the Hawks were looking at Trevor Gleeson, who guided the Perth Wildcats to five NBL championships.
“He has been in the NBA so from a credibility point of view he ticks all the boxes,” Campbell said.
“We’ll be certainly reaching out to Trevor to gauge a level of interest.”
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