Iona released a statement saying it had not been contacted by St. John's or its representatives as of Friday morning amid a report indicating coach Tim Cluess was considered a frontrunner to be the Red Storm's replacement.
Cluess, who has led Iona to the NCAA tournament six times since taking over in the 2010-11 season, is considered one of the favorites to replace Chris Mullin at St. John's, CBS Sports' Jon Rothstein reported Thursday night.
Iona admitted it was aware of the speculation surrounding Cluess and St. John's, but said it has spoken with Cluess about a potential "significant long-term contract" extension.
"Iona believes in Tim Cluess, invested considerably in Tim Cluess, and considers him to be family," Iona's statement said, according to Lohud.com. "Tim Cluess is an incredible coach and person. He successfully leads our program on and off the court."
After Mullin stepped down earlier this week, Cluess and Arizona State's Bobby Hurley emerged as two potential candidates to lead the Red Storm, however Hurley said in a statement he was "proud to be Sun Devils and want to remain at Arizona State for a long time," according to ESPN.
St. John's has already lost Shamorie Ponds and Justin Simon, who both declared for the NBA draft. Two other players, L.J. Figueroa and Bryan Trimble, are expected to transfer, while two recruits have decommitted.
Cluess, 60, has gone 199-108 in nine seasons at Iona, winning the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference six times.
Mullin, 55, went 59-73 in four seasons with St. John's. He turned them around from an 8-24 team in Year 1 to a 21-13 record this season, losing to Arizona State in an NCAA tournament play-in game.