Cal Poly fires its basketball coach during losing streak

March 7, 2019

Joe Callero

Following a string of losing seasons, Cal Poly fired its only men’s basketball coach to have led the Mustangs to the NCAA tournament. [Cal Coast Times]

Joe Callero served as Cal Poly’s head basketball coach for 10 seasons, starting in 2009. Cal Poly Athletic Director Don Oberhelman announced Wednesday that Callero will coach the team’s final two games on Thursday and Saturday and will not be retained beyond then.

“I’d like to thank Joe Callero for his 10 years of dedicated service to our university,” Oberhelman said in a statement. “Joe embraced the academic rigors of Cal Poly and worked very hard to give every one of his students the chance to graduate.”

In the current season, Cal Poly has a record of 6-21 and is in last place in the Big West with a mark of 2-12 in conference play. Callero recorded two winning seasons with the Mustangs, but the team is currently completing its sixth consecutive losing season.

During the 2013-2014 season, despite having a losing record, Callero led Cal Poly to its first ever Big West Conference Tournament championship. The team then won its first NCAA Tournament game in the program’s first appearance in the tournament.

Callero’s tenure included 13 All-Big West selections, and in 2014, Chris Eversley became the program’s first conference tournament most valuable player. Callero also coached David Nwaba, who went on to become the first Cal Poly player to make it to the NBA.

In 2017, Callero received $362,463 in total pay and benefits, according to the Transparent California database. His base pay was $262,159.

Cal Poly is conducting a national search for Callero’s successor.


Visit Transparent CA website. A Ca university janitor makes 234,000 .A San Jose deputy 1 makes 424,000 .A BART janitor over 200k .UC Davis retirement pay over 300k it goes on and on .Don’t even look at cal fire or SLO sheriffs pay unless your sitting down


Thanks for the tip on Transparent CA. Interesting site. I didn’t see any $234k a year UC “janitors.” In fact, the term is custodians and the highest pay listed was $161k. What’s weird about that listing is that this custodian had a base pay of 56k but had over 80k in “overtime pay.” Now, I always thought that university janitors, custodians, whatever, had pretty set schedules. So, I find this puzzling. Anyone out there know about this. Or is Transparent California not accurate.

Here’s a link:


How can anyone expect Cal Poly to have a wining Basketball team, there’s no basket weaving major like at other big time sports schools!!!


that and the gym is smaller than my high school’s, and we only had 800 students.


$362,463 you have to be kidding? But I know that they are not. It looks like sports may be more important to some than education. Probably a lot of kids at CP wondering if they should choose coaching as their desired field of education? Looks like it certainly would beat having to study for 4-5 years.


And he’s on the cheaper end of the scale @ $362k.

No state employee should be paid more than our Governor. Especially coaches.

You want to get a handle on our pension problems; start with these high end salaries. Not the low end city worker. If he is eligible for retirement we’ll pay 80% (of his 3 highest earning years) of that amount for years to come.


Are you saying that Nick Saban (salary $74M for 8 years) should make less than $120k – Governor of Alabama.

Coaches raise a lot more money than the governor, except of course on the campaign trail.


But who do they raise the money for? It will also be interesting to see what kind of “separation” bonus this guy will get. I’m guessing that it will be in the hundred of thousand dollars.