Tim Jankovich adjusts to new role at SMU

For Tim Jankovich, the offer couldn't have been any more attractive.

SMU was willing to make him the highest-paid assistant in America -- with a contract worth approximately $800,000 per year -- to leave his head coaching position at Illinois State for a job under Hall of Famer Larry Brown. And as soon as the 71-year-old icon retired, Jankovich would move into the lead chair.

For many coaches, the decision would've been simple.

Jankovich described it as "gut-wrenching."

"It was one of the hardest choices I've ever made, without question," Jankovich said. "I was happy where I was. I had great friends and a great life. All of our players were coming back. It would've been our best team. ...

"I had two great opportunities staring me in the face," Jankovich said, "and I wanted them both."

For more of Jason King's column on the new SMU basketball assistant coach, click here.