Frank Martin knew of Chuck Martin. When USC's head basketball coach knew he was going to have a vacancy on his staff with Matt Figger's departure for Austin Peay, Chuck's name was one of several he had in his back pocket.
In the end, he went with the former Marist head coach who for the past three years has been an assistant at Indiana. The Bronx, New York native has never worked with Martin before, which was just fine with the USC head coach.
"I wanted someone to come in and give me some fresh ideas, challenge my thought process" said Frank Martin.
"Perry Clark does that. I thought we needed someone else. Not that I'm uncomfortable with what I know. On the contrary. I'm extremely comfortable with what I know. But I'm also always trying to grow and Chuck, if you look at this resume and see who he's worked for and where at, he's worked for some of the most successful basketball people in the last 20 years."
Among those who Chuck Martin has worked for - Norm Roberts at St. John's, John Calipari at Memphis, and most recently, Tom Crean at Indiana. The newest Martin says those experiences and his five years as a head coach have allowed him to grow as a coach. Now he comes to USC after a season where Martin led the program to a single-season record 26 wins and the first Final Four appearance.
"It's hard to get to the Final Four," said Chuck Martin.
"This is a challenging thing and for him to do it in such a short window here at South Carolina is incredible. So, A) I feel fortunate to be a part of his staff because I know he's a great person and that's really important to me, being able to work with someone who's a tremendous person and B) I think he's gained a reputation over the years of being a tremendous teacher and communicator.
"This is the perfect time for me to join his staff, I think."