T.J. Otzelberger leaving UNLV for Iowa State head coach job
After just two years at UNLV, T.J. Otzelberger is headed back to Ames to be the new head coach at Iowa State. He was previously with the Cyclones from 2006-13 as associate head coach and again as an assistant for the 2015-16 season.
“It’s with great excitement and anticipation that we welcome T.J., Alison and their three children to Iowa State,” AD Jamie Pollard said in a statement on Thursday. “T.J. was instrumental in helping our program achieve some of its most-significant achievement and he is keenly aware of what it takes to be successful at Iowa State.”
Otzelberger worked under Fred Hoiberg, who commanded the most recent “golden era” of Iowa State basketball and should bring a lot of optimism and excitement back to the fan base.
“It’s somewhat rare to get the chance to return home but Iowa State was my first stop as a Division I college coach and it is my wife’s adopted home,” Otzelberger said. “The resources are here to build and sustain a program that competes at a high level in the Big 12 and nationally. I’m familiar with the foundation of the school and basketball program and am eager and inspired to sell our vision and re-establish a championship culture.”
Since leaving ISU, Otzelberger has gone 99-63 in five seasons as a head coach: 70-33 in three years at South Dakota State and then 29-30 in the last two years with the Rebels. He took the Jackrabbits to two NCAA Tournaments and won two Summit League titles.
credit to Isaac Brekken/Associated Press for the image