Brian Katz, who has been the head coach at Sacramento State since 2008, announced his retirement from coaching on Friday. Katz coached the Hornets to an exhibition victory over NAIA Simpson and the program is set to open its regular season next Tuesday. Associate head coach Brandon Laird will take over interim head coaching duties for the 2021-22 season.
“Due to an ongoing health issue, my family has convinced me to retire,” Katz said in a statement. “After coaching for 45 years, this already feels very strange. I’ve woken up every day at 4 a.m. fully invested in my players and my staff until I laid my head on the pillow at night.
“I want to thank all of my former players and assistant coaches. In truth, there are many months of the year where, as a coach, you spend more time with your team than your family. I do not remember every game, but I do remember every player. I truly believe the player-coach relationship officially begins when they are done playing for you.
“Lastly, I would like to thank all the fans that supported us over the years. You made the Nest a very difficult place to play for the opposition.”
Katz went 150-232 during his 13-year tenure with the program, the most of any head coach since the school made the move to Division I in 1991. After winning 21 games in 2015 and leading the Hornets to the CIT, Katz was named Big Sky Coach of the Year and honored with the Hugh Durham Award as the top mid-major head coach in the country.
The 63-year old is a Sacramento-native and a graduate of the school, having returned to his alma mater in 2008 after a successful tenure as head coach at San Joaquin Delta CC in Stockton, CA. He was inducted into the California Community College Men’s Basketball Coaches Association HOF in 2009.
The Hornets new leader, Laird has been withe the program since 2011 and was elevated to associate head coach in 2012. He also hails from Sacramento and played four seasons at UC Davis, where he was part of the Aggies’ 1997-98 D-II NCAA Championship season.
credit to Sacramento State Athletics for the image