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Tampa, Florida (USA TODAY) -- Steve Masiello, the former Manhattan coach, will not be headed to the University of South Florida, according to a report from ESPN. The report says Masiello did not earn his degree from the University of Kentucky during his four years there.

Related: USF fires basketball coach Stan Heath

Masiello did not graduate from Kentucky, UK spokeswoman Ashley Caressen told ESPN. Masiello attended UK from the fall of 1996 to the summer of 2000 but never earned his degree, Caressen said.

His bio on the Manhattan website says Masiello earned a communications degree from Kentucky. His agent declined comment to ESPN.

Rick Pitino, who coached Masiello in Kentucky and then faced him in the tournament, said he was surprised by ESPN's report.

"If it's accurate, I'm shocked by it," Pitino said. "I had no idea. I left the previous year and he was on track to graduate."

This not only takes him out of running for the South Florida job, but also calls into question his future with Manhattan. The Jaspers went to the NCAA tournament this year after winning the MAAC, where they lost to Louisville in the first round.

The University of South Florida released the following statement Wednesday on the search for a men's basketball coach:

During the search for a new men's basketball coach, an agreement in principle was reached by USF and candidate Steve Masiello. The agreement was pending a verification of credentials. Through the verification process it was determined the candidate's credentials could not be substantiated and therefore he did not meet the requirements for the position. The national search continues and USF looks forward to introducing a new coach at the appropriate time.

USF Men's Basketball Coach Requirements:

Head Coach: http://usfweb2.usf.edu/human-resources/pdfs/class-comp/job-codes/9613.pdf

Assistant Coach: http://usfweb2.usf.edu/human-resources/pdfs/class-comp/job-codes/9467.pdf

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