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Sports >  WSU basketball

Pepperdine, head coach Lorenzo Romar announce addition of former Washington State coach Ken Bone

March 13, 2018 Updated Tue., March 13, 2018 at 4:56 p.m.

Former Washington State head coach Ken Bone is on his way to Malibu, California, as an assistant with Pepperdine. (Dean Hare / AP)
Former Washington State head coach Ken Bone is on his way to Malibu, California, as an assistant with Pepperdine. (Dean Hare / AP)

Longtime Washington coach Lorenzo Romar isn’t waiting long to assemble his new coaching staff at Pepperdine and he started by adding a former nemesis and colleague from the Pac-12 Conference.

Ex-Washington State coach Ken Bone will join Romar as an associate head coach for the Waves, the school announced in a press release Tuesday morning. Bone wasn’t working in college basketball this season and most recently served as a special assistant to Gonzaga’s Mark Few during the 2016-17 season.

It marks the second time Romar has hired Bone as an assistant. He spent 2002-05 as an aid to the longtime UW coach.

“I’ve known Ken for a long time, ever since I was in college,” Romar said in the press release. “When I was an assistant at UCLA, I talked to Jim Harrick about bringing him on because I thought he would do a good job, though it didn’t work out. But when I was hired at Washington the first guy I wanted to bring on was Ken Bone, and so he joined me on that staff. He went on to be a successful head coach. He’s a great basketball mind who really understands the game.”

Together, Romar and Bone bring 31 years of head coaching experience to Pepperdine, a West Coast Conference program that won 15 games the past two season under seventh-year coach Marty Wilson and struggles to compete with the league’s heavyweights, such as Gonzaga and Saint Mary’s.

Bone replaced Tony Bennett at WSU in 2009 and led the Cougars to two winning seasons over a span of five years. They reached the semifinals of the National Invitation Tournament and won 22 games in 2010-11 and were runners-up in the College Basketball Invitational the next season, finishing with a 19-18 mark. Following two seasons that saw the Cougars win a combined 23 games, Bone was fired by then WSU Athletic Director Bill Moos. They compiled an 80-86 record in Bone’s five seasons.

From 2014-16, Bone worked as the associate coach at Montana – his second stint in the Big Sky after spending four years at Portland State as a head coach – before joining Few and the Zags in 2016-17.

“Having worked for Lorenzo in the past, I know I’m joining someone that I trust and respect immensely,” Bone said. “He’s a terrific basketball coach and has always had a huge impact on the student-athletes that he’s worked with, on and off the court.”

Bone and Romar squared off nine times while respectively coaching the Cougars and Huskies. The former UW coach had the upper hand in the rivalry, winning six of the nine games.

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