Central Michigan fires Keno Davis after 9 years as head men’s basketball coach

Keno Davis (courtesy Central Michigan Athletics)


Central Michigan University Athletics is parting ways with Head Men’s Basketball Coach Keno Davis after nine years at the helm Zyzelewski Family Associate Vice President/Athletic Director Amy Folan announced on Monday, April 5.

Under Davis, who started in Mt. Pleasant in 2012, the CMU Chippewas went 142-143 overall and 62-94 in the Mid-American Conference, with a MAC Championship in 2015. His teams also appeared in the postseason four times – NIT (2015), CollegeInsider.com tournament (2016 and 2018) and the College Basketball Invitational (2019).

“I am extremely grateful to Keno for the impact he has made on our student-athletes and the greater CMU community,” Folan said.  “Decisions like this are always difficult.  However, after spending the last few months evaluating all aspects of our program, I believe it is necessary and appropriate to make a change in leadership at this time to achieve the goals we have for men’s basketball.”

CMU will launch a national search for a new head men’s basketball coach immediately with the assistance of DHR International.  


Keno Emlen Davis (born March 10, 1972) is an American college basketball coach who was most recently the current men’s basketball head coach at Central Michigan University. Davis was previously head coach at Drake University for one season (2007–2008), where he was named the 2008 Associated Press College Basketball Coach of the Year, and at Providence College for three seasons (2008-2011). Davis also served as an assistant coach at Drake from 2003–2007 under his father Tom Davis prior to starting his coaching career.

Coaching career

Davis served as an undergraduate assistant coach at the University of Iowa under his father from 1991–1995. After graduating, he served as an assistant coach at the University of Southern Indiana from 1995–1997 and at Southeast Missouri State University from 1997–2003. He rejoined his father as an assistant coach after the elder Davis was named head coach at Drake University in April 2003. When his father retired in 2007, Keno Davis became the team’s head coach, and led the Bulldogs to a 28–5 record and a berth in the 2008 NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament. Following the season, Davis was named the College Basketball Coach of the Year by 6 organizations including the Associated Press and U.S. Basketball Writers Association. Davis left Drake University to join the Big East Conference as the head coach of Providence College in April 2008. After the 2010–2011 season Davis joined the Big Ten Network as an analyst for the 2011-2012 college basketball season.

Davis was introduced by Central Michigan University as the Chippewas’ 20th head men’s basketball coach on April 3, 2012. Just four players would be on CMU’s roster from the previous season (all of which would be reserves for Davis). One of the youngest teams in the country, the Chippewas found a way to win in double figures each season though only acquiring a 21-41 overall record.

Central Michigan finished the 2014-2015 regular season 22-7 (12-6) and earned the top seed in the MAC conference tournament.