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Lamar basketball Coach Steve Roccaforte relieved of duties

Steve Roccaforte has been relieved of his duties as head men’s basketball coach at Lamar University, announced Director of Athletics Larry Tidwell on Monday.

Roccaforte just completed his fifth season at Lamar, compiling a 76-78 overall record and a 39-41 mark in Southland Conference play. The Cardinals finished 13-17 overall this season, including a 7-9 record in SLC games which tied for ninth in the league standings.

Tidwell announced that a national search for Roccaforte’s replacement will begin immediately.

“This was a decision not made easily,” said Tidwell. “After a thorough evaluation of both this season, and his overall tenure at Lamar, it was deemed necessary for a change.”

Roccaforte was named head coach at Lamar on March 21, 2006, after spending three seasons on Billy Tubbs’ coaching staff. The Cardinals finished with a 15-17 record in his first season and tied for third in the SLC East Division.

In his second season, Roccaforte guided the Cardinals to a 19-11 overall record and a 13-3 conference mark. Lamar won the 2007-08 SLC regular season co-championship, its first since the 1983-84 season. Lamar was 15-15 in 2008-09 with a 6-10 SLC mark, and 14-18 the following year with a 5-11 record in conference play.

During Roccaforte’s five years at Lamar, 15 of the 16 players who exhausted their eligibility in a Cardinal uniform went on to earn their degree.

“I want to thank Steve and his entire coaching staff for their hard work over the past five years,” said Tidwell. “Steve has always represented Lamar in a professional manner and had a positive effect on our community. Steve is an excellent coach, recruiter, and friend and I wish him and his family the absolute best in future endeavors.”