It was simply time to move on.
That's what Chris Mullin said about his St. John's departure in an interview with the Associated Press on Monday.
"It got to a certain point for me to do something different," Mullin told The AP. "Straight from the heart and gut, when you do it that way it's natural. It wasn't anything but that. I'm excited to do some different things."
After missing the NCAA Tournament in his first three years as the Red Storm's coach, the former St. John's star led the team to the First Four this season, where it was eliminated by Arizona State. Though this was the best of Mullin's four seasons as coach, given the talent on the team, some believed it was a disappointing result.
"I think it's all about timing. I had four great years," Mullin said. "It was time to do something different. It's a lot of work, it's time consuming. We grew each year. Last year we had incredible success from where we came from. We had steady progress each year, which was hard to do."
On Friday, St. John's hired former Arkansas coach Mike Anderson as Mullin's replacement after missing out on Bobby Hurley and Porter Moser.Tim Cluess had also withdrawn his name from consideration.
"He's a great selection. He's got a great track record, I got friends that know him," Mullin told The AP. "Some of my friends who played at Arkansas know him well. He's a class guy, great fit. He'll do a good job."
No matter how things went down at the end of his coaching tenure, St. John's will always have a place in Mullin's heart.
"That place and I go back to when I was 10 years old with coach (Lou) Carnesecca," he said. "It will continue. I met my wife there. It's beyond my playing and coaching there. It's a special place for me and always will be."