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GW’s Mike Lonergan is on Rutgers’ coaching-search wish list

George Washington head coach Mike Lonergan. (Keith Srakocic/Associated Press)

George Washington men’s basketball coach Mike Lonergan is on the short list for the vacancy at Rutgers, which has requested permission to speak with him about its head-coaching job. But people close to the fifth-year coach, citing his strong ties to the Washington area, indicated he has no plans to leave Foggy Bottom despite what would be a considerable pay raise at a Big Ten school.

Lonergan turned down an offer from Boston College two years ago when GW gave him a contract extension through 2020-21, and sources close to the coach said the only position they could see him accepting, if it comes open, is Maryland’s. Lonergan grew up in Bowie as an avid fan of the Terrapins and was an assistant under former coach Gary Williams.

Rutgers is seeking a new coach after recently firing Eddie Jordan. The former Washington Wizards coach was making $1.15 million at Rutgers, according to published reports, which is roughly twice as much as GW is paying Lonergan, sources said.

People close to Lonergan did say he is seeking more resources from GW officials in light of a flight cancellation earlier this season that forced the team to take a bus 12 hours to Olean, N.Y., for a Feb. 13 game against St. Bonaventure. The Colonials lost, 64-57. The Colonials fly commercial while the majority of schools in the Atlantic 10 charter planes to road games.

The Colonials (23-10) next play on Wednesday night at home against Hofstra the first round of the NIT after they fell short of a second NCAA tournament bid in three years. GW had a chance to strengthen its NCAA tournament résumé in the Atlantic 10 tournament but failed to protect a 14-point halftime lead in an 86-80 loss to Saint Joseph’s in the quarterfinals on Friday at Barclays Center.

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