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Wednesday, February 20, 2008
N.J. Tech coach Casciano to step down at end of season

Associated Press

NEWARK, N.J. -- Jim Casciano resigned Wednesday as head basketball coach at New Jersey Institute of Technology, effective at the end of the season.

NJIT is the only winless school in Division I this season. The Highlanders are 0-28.

In a statement issued by the school, Casciano said he plans to explore other opportunities in athletics. His last game with the Highlanders will be Saturday, when they play at Utah Valley State.

Casciano is in his seventh season at NJIT and has a record of 66-118.

He is in his 22nd season overall as a coach. He had left the team for more than a month this season because of undisclosed personal health concerns, but returned to work on Dec. 27.

Athletic director Lenny Kaplan said the school -- which recently made the jump from Division II -- would begin a national search for Casciano's replacement and hoped to have a new coach in place "as soon as possible."

NJIT posted a 5-24 record in 2006-07, its first season in Division I. But it has lost 32 consecutive games, with its last win coming against Longwood on Feb. 19, 2007.

"NJIT is fully committed to the continued growth of our young Division I athletics program," Kaplan said. "We will look for a head coach who will lead the basketball program to achieve the same progress that we have seen in our overall athletic program since we began competing at the Division I level in 2006-07."