S. Illinois hires ex-Missouri St. coach Hinson

CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS/AP) - Southern Illinois introduced former Missouri State coach Barry Hinson Wednesday to be the Salukis' new men's basketball coach.

Heartland Sports News Director Todd Richards first broke the story of Hinson's hiring on Tuesday evening's sportscast at 6 p.m.

Athletic Director Mario Moccia confirmed the hiring Wednesday and welcomed Hinson to Southern Illinois in a Twitter posting.

A news conference introducing Hinson as the new coach was held this afternoon in Carbondale.

Hinson tells Heartland News it came down to tradition when he chose SIU.

"For me it came down to tradition," said Hinson.  I knew about the tradition of the program. And what had happened, because I was first hand witness to it for nine years."

Hinson says the Saluki's are going to prepare to win every game.   He says the team is just going to wake up everyday and try to get better.

Terms of Hinson's deal haven't been disclosed.

Hinson was fired by the Bears in 2008 after failing to take that program to the NCAA tournament in nine seasons.

During that time, he guided Missouri State to a 169-117 mark.

"It meant a lot to me to come back to the Missouri Valley Conference," Hinson tells Heartland News.  "But it meant even more to come back to a university like Southern Illinois."

He's served the past two seasons as director of men's basketball operations at Kansas, which plays Ohio State in a national semifinal Saturday.

Hinson replaces Chris Lowery, who was fired this month after eight seasons with the Salukis.

Copyright 2012 KFVS. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.