Haggerty Staying as MSU Basketball Coach - KAUZ-TV: Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Haggerty Staying as MSU Basketball Coach

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Midwestern State will be holding on to Men's Head Basketball Coach Nelson Haggerty, after all.

After a few weeks of wondering if he'd return to Central Missouri, where he went to the Final Four as an assistant in 2009, Haggerty confirmed Wednesday that he will be staying with the Mustangs.

Speaking at a news conference on Wednesday afternoon, Haggerty and MSU Athletic Director Charlie Carr talked about the impact the community had on Haggerty's desire to stay.

"Just hearing the support from the different people, just being supported in that way, it just doesn't happen for very many people," Haggerty said. "And I don't think it's just about me, I think it's about our program. When you feel your community is that supportive of what you're doing and how you're doing it, it just means a lot."

Carr had very high praise for the coach who just completed his third season with a 75-21 record, three NCAA tournament appearances and tournament wins in each season.

"Nelson fits to a T what this university is all about," Carr said. "He's a great coach. He's a motivator. He has the best values of any basketball coach I've ever been around, other than Dean Smith, and that's pretty high company."

Carr worked with the legendary Smith at North Carolina.

As for Haggerty, he said the chance to return to UCM definitely interested him. The Mules won the National Title this season before Head Coach Kim Anderson took the vacant position at the University of Missouri. Anderson was Haggerty's head coach in his time at UCM, and the two are still very close.

Haggerty did not say whether he was ever officially offered a contract by UCM, but said he was 'confident' the job could be his if he wanted it.

But in the end, he said he just couldn't bring himself to leave the city that has become his home.

"I found it harder and harder to leave," as he thought through the decision, Haggerty said. "In my heart of hearts, I was not leaving."