Iowa basketball assistant Billy Taylor accepts head coaching job at Elon

One of Fran McCaffery’s top assistant coaches is leaving the Iowa men's basketball program for a head coaching opportunity.

Billy Taylor has accepted the head coach position at Elon, the North Carolina-based school announced Friday afternoon. Earlier, an Iowa source with direct knowledge of Taylor's departure confirmed a report by CBS Sports' Matt Norlander that Taylor was taking the job.

Taylor served two stints with Iowa, first from 2013 to 2016 as the director of basketball operations. He returned in 2019 to replace Andrew Francis as an assistant coach. 

Taylor stepped in for McCaffery on Feb. 6 against Minnesota after McCaffery tested positive for COVID-19. Iowa defeated Minnesota, 71-59, in what began a strong February push for the Hawkeyes, who would go on to win 26 games — the second-highest total in Iowa history.

Taylor and McCaffery have an extensive history together, Taylor coached with McCaffery at Notre Dame from 1998-99 and under McCaffery as an assistant at UNC-Greensboro from 1999 to 2002. 

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Elon is Taylor’s fourth head coaching opportunity; he previously served as head coach at Lehigh, Ball State and Division II Belmont Abbey. He holds a 214-210 career record and was Patriot League coach of the year twice (2003, '04) while at Lehigh.

Elon, which plays in the Colonial Athletic Association, has never reached the NCAA Tournament.  

Kennington Lloyd Smith III covers Iowa Hawkeyes football and men's basketball for the Des Moines Register. You can connect with Kennington on Twitter @SkinnyKenny_ or email him at