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Danny Manning's Departure Stings Tulsa Basketball Fan Base

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Fans take issue with the way Manning broke the news to players and the fact that TU is labeled as a stepping-stone job. Fans take issue with the way Manning broke the news to players and the fact that TU is labeled as a stepping-stone job.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

The University of Tulsa men's basketball coach Danny Manning is leaving the Golden Hurricane to become the new coach at Wake Forest.

The athletic director accepted Manning's resignation this morning.

Some understand it's business, but others are upset with the way it all went down.

Before TU students hit campus on Friday, news had already spread about basketball coach Danny Manning packing his bags for Wake Forest.

Many wondering what great things Manning could have done with a young Golden Hurricane team.

"It's still a bit heartbreaking because we had a good season, and I'm guessing he did get some ties with his guys," student Daniel Santos said. "It was a young team, he could have done more with it."

04/04/2014 Related Story: Manning To Leave Tulsa For Wake Forest

In Manning's two years with Tulsa, he's brought excitement back to the program and led this year's team to the NCAA Tournament.

"I think he'll be successful wherever he goes, and I don't doubt we'll find somebody who can continue what he started here," student Rob Egan said.

Over on The Buzz 1430am, callers are singing a different tune.

"The lightning rod drawing the most criticism - why Manning notified his players in a text message?" the radio host said.

And callers were even more fired up.

"Shame on him and don't ever give me any of that horse crap, 'oh well we're here to teach them to be young men on and off the field and learn to be gentlemen.' No. What did he just teach them? He taught them that it's OK to sneak out in the middle of the night and have somebody find out on a tweet from ESPN or however the heck they found out," a caller said.

Some say TU has a tradition of not being able to keep talented coaches.

"I'm kind of upset about everybody saying this is a stepping stone school," another caller said. "That gets on my last nerve."

And with the newest departure, the fan base will be looking for another source of hope for the program.

"You're going to lose coaches like this from time to time," The Buzz Sports Director Jeremie Poplin said. "It's in TU's DNA almost. It's in their past. They've been able to recover from it, and I think they can do it again."

Sources tell us TU made several lucrative offers to keep Manning, including raising his salary to $1.2 million.

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