One of Michigan's premier basketball coaches announced on Friday that he has taken a job in Arizona.
Kurt Keener, who also is athletic director at Detroit Country Day (Beverly Hills, Mich.)
, told Tom Markowski of the Detroit News
that he has taken a job as head coach at Desert Mountain (Scottsdale, Ariz.)
and he will report there in June to launch a summer program.
The 57-year-old Keener, who won nine Class B state titles and 699 games, is second only in Michigan history to Lofton Greene of River Rouge, who notched 12 state championships. He also coached two of the state's all-time great players, Chris Webber and Shane Battier, who each was named Michigan's Mr. Basketball and led Country Day to three state titles.
Keener told Markowski, "I will retire (in June) from Country Day. I knew they wouldn't have a teaching position, so right now it's just coaching. I feel blessed. My wife (Nedra) was ready to go four years ago. Of the warm weather regions that fits us best."
Keener's son, Joe, is a junior at the University of Arizona and hopes to become a college basketball coach.
Fred Massey, who played for Keener and also was his assistant coach for five years, said, "To me, when you talk about coaching and kids advancing to the next level, Kurt is the best. You talk about character, Kurt is right at the top. His concerns for his kids were No. 1. His ego did not get in the way. I have nothing but the highest respect for coach Keener."
Richard Obert of the Arizona Republic noted that Keener will inherit an outstanding team with nine lettermen returning from a Division I state semifinalist. All-State point guard Rolando Rhymes
will be the leader, along with 6-foot-6, 238-pound football star Mark Andrews.