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Western Michigan parts ways with coach Clayton Bates

parted ways Monday with head coach Clayton Bates after just two seasons.

The Broncos were 8-23 this season, including finishing 4-16 and in last place in the Mid-American Conference. Bates finishes 13-39 in two seasons.

“In assessing our performance in recent years, we agreed a change in leadership is necessary to elevate this program towards a level of comprehensive excellence that includes competing at the highest levels of the MAC,” WMU athletics director Dan Bartholomae said in a statement. “We thank Clayton and his family and wish all the best in their future endeavors.”

Bartholomae was named the school’s AD last December.

Bates took over as head coach after the school fired Steve Hawkins in 2020 after 17 seasons. Bates had been on Hawkins’ staff before getting elevated.

“Most importantly, thank you to the student-athletes,” Bates said in the statement. “It has been an honor and a privilege to be a member of your team. We wanted every day we took the court to be the best two hours of our day. It always was for me, and I am grateful for our time together. Thank you for giving your very best.”

The school announced a national search for its next coach and will employ DHR Global Sports Practice to assist in the search.

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