The FIU Panthers posted a 5-11 conference record last season under Thomas, finishing last in the East division of the Sun Belt Conference. (Reuters/Richard Clement)
The 50-year-old Hall of Fame former Detroit Piston went 26-65 in three seasons at FIU, never having led the team to win more than 11 games in a season.
The university's statement of the firing read:
FIU Executive Director of Sports and Entertainment Pete Garcia announced today that Isiah Thomas has been relieved of his duties as head coach of the FIU men's basketball program.
We want to thank Isiah Thomas for his three years here at FIU, Garcia said. However, we have decided to take the program in a different direction.
A national search for the Panthers' next head basketball coach will begin immediately.
Thomas took the head coaching position at FIU in what was perhaps a surprising move in 2009, giving him a chance to restore his embarrassing reputation while with the New York Knicks. Thomas previously coached the Knicks and Indiana Pacers in the NBA and was also the Knicks' president of basketball operations.