Wednesday, April 28, 2010

'The Mayor' Fred Hoiberg is back in Ames as Iowa State's new head basketball coach

The dominoes have fallen quickly this week, with Oregon hiring Dana Altman from Creighton, causing Iowa State's Greg McDermott to leave Ames for CU ... and suddenly, as fast as Creighton filled Altman's spot, Iowa State and AD Jamie Pollard has filled McDermott's spot, with former ISU star and Ames native Fred Hoiberg.

Congratulations to the Cyclone Nation for bringing Fred Hoiberg back to Ames ...

His message Wednesday was clear: Fred Hoiberg wants to return the magic he helped bring to Hilton Coliseum — and this time he wants to do it as a coach. ...
AD Pollard hired a wrestling star, Cael Sanderson, with little experience. So with a Void in the men's basketball program, why not make it the Fred Hoiberg era at Iowa State University?

Hoiberg to ISU is high risk, too -‎ESPN (blog)
New Cyclones coach Fred Hoiberg doesn't have any coaching or ... That someone is former Iowa State Cyclones star Fred Hoiberg. ...
Hoiberg: Popular and risky hire‎ - Kansas City Star
Not everything is smelling like a Rose in Ames. Remember Cael Sanderson, well he helped the ISU wrestling program, but he did bolt to Penn State in the Big Ten Conference, when the opportunity arose.

Fred Hoiberg: “The Mayor” is now “The Coach” -‎Gazette Online (blog) - Mike Hlas
Bumping Cael Sanderson up to head wrestling coach, getting someone with Iowa State ties in Paul Rhoads to replace Gene Chizik as the football coach — those ...

Steven M. Sipple: Creighton job better than Iowa St. -
Indeed, Pollard keeps saying goodbye to his key hires — football coach Gene Chizik to Auburn, wrestling coach Cael Sanderson to Penn State and now McDermott ...
Unrelated news from Creighton Unversity ...
McDermott waiting to decide on suspended Stinnett‎ - Greenwich Time
(AP) New Creighton coach Greg McDermott says he hasn't decided whether to reinstate suspended guard P'Allen Stinnett. Former coach Dana Altman suspended ...

It appears Oregon, Creighton and Iowa State have likely improved in various ways. The 51 year-old Altman was ready to move up, after flirting with the Arkansas job 3 years ago. McDermott was the right coach for Iowa State over Hoiberg four years ago. But, today, the Iowa State program will likely be very happy to have an 'in-house' guy, while Creighton gets a seasoned Valley coach in McDermott to build on the 16 years, mostly success, under Altman.


Monday, April 26, 2010

Creighton University: one coach departs, but a new coach is found for the Bluejays

The official announcement will come Tuesday, rather than Monday. Dana Altman officially becomes Oregon's head coach today, and Creighton will replace Altman with Iowa State basketball coach Greg McDermott.
“I know this was a very difficult decision for Greg and his family. The contract
terms that Creighton offered him and an opportunity to coach his son were
significant factors in his decision. We wish Greg the best of luck at
- ISU AD Jamie Pollard
Greg and Doug McDermott are heading to Creighton‎ - Des Moines
A press conference to introduce Greg McDermott as Creighton's new coach will be held in Omaha at 10:30 am Tuesday. "Very difficult decision," Greg McDermott ...


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Creighton's AD Bruce Rasmussen doesn't take much time: Greg McDermott, former UNI coach and current ISU coach moving West to Omaha as new Jays coach

Oregon hasn't officially announced the hiring of Creighton's head coach Dana Altman yet, but Creighton AD Bruce Rasmussen traveled to Des Moines today to take care of his opening. It will be an exciting day for both the Creighton and Oregon basketball programs with news most likely of a new head coach.

Report: McDermott Takes Creighton Job‎ - WOI -
Entertainment News from AP Entertainment News from AP A media outlet in Omaha is reporting that ISU head men's basketball coach Greg McDermott has accepted ...

Dana Altman's reportedly out; If I'm Greg McDermott, by gosh, I'm ... - (blog)

Altman to Oregon‎ - White and Blue Review

Update: What will happen with the buyout on McDermott?

Report: McDermott Leaving ISU - Takes Creighton Job‎ - KCCI Des Moines

McDermott and Creighton: Read the fine print - (blog)


Creighton University's Dana Altman, the dean of The Valley basketball coaches, expected to be named new basketball coach at Oregon

After 16 seasons coaching at Creighton University, the dean of Missouri Valley Conference basketball coaches is headed to the Pac Ten and Oregon reports over the weekend have been ringing ...

Altman spent 16 season at Creighton, finishing with a 327-176 record. He led the
Bluejays to 11 consecutive 20-win seasons before they went 18-16 this year.

Dana Altman arrives in Eugene‎ - KVAL
By KVAL News Creighton University's Dana Altman has landed in Eugene after telling his players in Nebraska he would be Oregon's new coach. EUGENE, Ore. ...

It started on Saturday, April 24, 2010, reports Dana Altman was headed west ...

Reports: Creighton's Dana Altman agrees to coach Oregon Ducks ... - ESPN
Apr 24, 2010 ... Multiple media outlets are reporting Creighton coach Dana Altman has agreed to take over at Oregon ...

Reports: Creighton's Dana Altman to be hired as coach at Oregon - USA Today
Creighton coach Dana Altman, who has led the Bluejays to seven NCAA tournament appearances in 16 years, will become the new head coach at the University of ...

The Qwest Center Omaha was built during Altman run ...

Altman was responsible for taking The Valley school from an average attendance of 5,000 fans at the old Omaha Civic Auditorium to moving Creighton to #12 in the NCAA attendance rankings leading fans to the Qwest Center Omaha.

It appears Dana Altman is hard on the recruiting trail already ...

Boys' basketball: Polee to visit Oregon after postponing announcement‎ - Los Angeles Times (blog)
Oregon has apparently selected Creighton Coach Dana Altman to be its new coach, and he has gotten immediately involved in a last-minute bid for Polee. ...

UGA target Dwayne Polee postpones announcement‎ - Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog)
... in order to take a closer look at Oregon, the Los Angeles Times is reporting. ... with Creighton's Dana Altman to become their new head coach and Altman ...

Decision postponed — again — as Polee will visit Oregon this week‎ - Las Vegas Sun

It was likely time after Sweet 16 years in Omaha ...

Three years ago, the University of Iowa job was open and Dana Altman appeared to be interested. But, Iowa AD Gary Barta appeared to be interested in Todd Lickliter and Kevin Stallings, so Altman, who appeared set to make a move, didn't get the job. Interested in moving on then, Altman got talked into the University of Arkansas job. But, after going through the introduction in Fayetteville, he asked out and asked friend and Creighton AD Bruce Rasmussen for a second chance.

Some Creighton fans were a little taken back by the entire process. Recruiting and player stability seemed to be a little off. Well, now Dana Altman is off to Eugene, Oregon and a new job.

Thanks for 16 great years of memories Dana. It was a good ride ...


What to look forward to in the Big Ten Conference in 2010 at QB?

The Big Ten Conference ended the 2009 season with four teams picking up at least 10 wins overall and defeating four Top 15 opponents to close out the season in bowl play.

Northwestern, Michigan State and Minnesota all finished in a bowl game, but lost. The Big Ten finished 4-3 in bowls during the 2009-10 bowl schedule. Purdue finished 4-4 in the Big Ten, but didn't get bowl eligible in 2009 under first year coach Danny Hope. Illinois finished 9Th, while Michigan dropped to the cellar with Indiana in 2009.

There is a lot of talent returning in the Big Ten Conference for the 2010 season, including experienced quarterbacks.

Lucky Seven Back Under Center: The Big Ten welcomes back seven starting quarterbacks from the 2009 season, five of which led their teams to bowl appearances. Iowa senior Ricky Stanzi and Ohio State junior Terrelle Pryor each led their squads to BCS victories last January, Stanzi in the Orange Bowl and Pryor in the Rose Bowl. Wisconsin senior Scott Tolzien led the Badgers to a victory in the Champs Sports Bowl, while Minnesota senior Adam Weber guided the Gophers to the Insight Bowl. Michigan State junior Kirk Cousins guided the Spartans' in their 31-point effort in the Alamo Bowl. Also returning in 2010 is the conference's top statistical passer, Indiana senior Ben Chappell, and Michigan sophomore Tate Forcier, the only full-time freshman starting quarterback in the Big Ten last year.

Seven starting QBs do return for the 2010 season in the Big Ten Conference. Quarterback play is often one of the key factors to success in college football. It should be another interesting season in 2010.

  • Iowa senior Ricky Stanzi returned from a 2-3 game injury for the Orange Bowl. Stanzi lead Iowa to a 24-14 win over the ACC-champion Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. Sophomore James Vandenberg started two games in relief of the injured Stanzi and provides a solid 1-2 punch for the Hawkeyes, if needed.

  • Ohio State junior Terrelle Pryor returns, after leading the Buckeyes to the Big Ten championship, the fifth straight, and a 26-17 win in the Rose Bowl over the Pac Ten champion Oregon Ducks.

  • Wisconsin senior Scott Tolzien lead the Badgers to 20-14 win over Miami-FL in the Champs Sports Bowl. The Badgers return 10 of 11 starters on offense in 2010. Sadly, projected #2 QB sophomore Curt Phillips has been lost for the 2010 season, due to a knee injury.

  • Michigan State junior Kirk Cousins enters the 2010 season as the clear #1, as junior Keith Nichol has been moved the WR, after battling Cousins for the #1 job in the early part of the 2009 season.

  • Minnesota senior Adam Weber returns as a three-year starter for the Golden Gophers. But, one has to wonder, if we will see more of sophomore QB MarQueis Gray or redshirt freshman Moses Alipate , after Weber's up and down junior season?

  • Indiana senior Ben Chappell returns for the 2010 season to lead Hoosiers, coached by Bill Lynch, now in his fourth season. Chappel's freshman season in '07 was the last bowl appearance for Hoosier program, ending a drought, since 1993

  • Michigan sophomore Tate Forcier returns, but will he stay #1 with sophomore Denard Robinson battling again for playing time at QB for the Wolverines? Could true freshman Devin Gardner emerge for coach Rich Rodriquez, who is entering his third season in Ann Arbor?

The other four schools must replace the top signal caller in 2010.

  • Northwestern returns junior Dan Persa, who played in relief for departed Mike Kafka, especially the midway part of Northwestern's upset win over Iowa to end Iowa's 13 game winning streak. The Wildcats are coming off a 35-38 OT loss to Auburn in the Outback Bowl.

  • Penn State has to find the replacement for two-year starter Daryll Clark, who help lead the Nittany Lions to a share of the 2008 Big Ten title. Sophomores Kevin Newsome and Matthew McGloin will battle with true freshman Paul Jones for the 2010 quarterback job in Happy Valley.

  • Purdue looks for Miami-FL transfer sophomore Robert Marve to replace departed Joey Elliott to lead the Boilermakers offense in 2010.

  • Illinois will have to replace four-year starter departed Juice Williams at quarterback and former backup senior Eddie McGee has moved to receiver for the Fighting Illini. Look for redshirt freshman Nathan Scheelhaase, son of former Iowa defensive back Nate Creer, to get the first opportunity. Scheelhaase will be backed up by sophomore Jacob Charest.

The 2010 College Football season will kicks off on Thursday September 2, 2010 with three Big Ten programs (Ohio State, Indiana and Minnesota) playing.


Saturday, April 24, 2010

Coach Fran McCaffery hires 2Nd assistant at Iowa: former Central Florida head coach Kirk Speraw returns to alma mater

On Friday, April 24, 2010, the University of Iowa announced that ...

IOWA CITY, IA - - University of Iowa Head Basketball Coach Fran McCaffery has named former Hawkeye Kirk Speraw an assistant coach on his basketball staff. The hiring of Speraw was announced today and becomes effective immediately.

"I'm excited and honored for the opportunity to return to the University
of Iowa and reconnect with friends and fans of the Hawkeye basketball program,"
said Speraw. "My family and I are extremely appreciative of Coach McCaffery for
this opportunity. I'm eager to help and hit the ground running. I'm very
impressed with Coach McCaffery and his vision for the program."
"I'm ecstatic to have KirkSperaw join our staff," said McCaffery. "I have known Kirk a long time and have tremendous respect for his knowledge, character and reputation. When I was at the Final Four, Lute Olson recommended him very highly, as has everyone else I have spoken to about him. Kirk is very well known and liked in the state of Iowa and it is great to have a Hawkeye on the staff."
Speraw, who is a Sioux City, IA native has over three decades of basketball coaching experience. He is a two-time Hawkeye letterman (1978-79) who played for Head Coach Lute Olson. He was a member of the 1978-79 squad that won 20 contests and a Big Ten title. As a senior, he was named the team's most inspirational player.

As both an assistant and head coach, Speraw has mentored dozens of players who have played professionally, including Hawkeyes Ronnie Lester, Steve Krafcisin, Vince Brookins, Steve Waite, Kenny Arnold, Kevin Boyle, Mark Gannon and Bobby Hansen.

Speraw began his coaching career with the Hawkeyes, serving as a graduate assistant with Iowa's 1979-80 team that advanced to the Final Four. The Hawkeyes went 23-8 that season. Speraw then moved to Denver University, where he was an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for two years (1980-82).

Speraw joins the Hawkeyes after serving 17 years as head coach at the University of Central Florida (1993-2010). Speraw is the school's winningest coach with a 279-233 record. During his tenure, 18 of his players received all-league honors, including four first team honorees. Additionally, since the start of the 1993-94 season, 54 of Speraw's student-athletes earned academic all-conference recognition.

His tenure included four NCAA Tournament berths (1994, '96, '04 and `05). In 2006-07, he was recognized as Conference USA Coach of the Year after guiding the Knights to 22 victories and a second place league finish. His most successful season at UCF was in 2003-04, when the Knights finished 25-6, received votes in the top 25 and won the Atlantic Sun championship, earning an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Prior to his head coaching job at UCF, he served as an assistant coach at the University of Florida for three seasons (1990-93) under Head Coach Lon Kruger. While on the Florida staff, the Gators participated in two NIT's, including advancing to the semifinals in 1992.
Prior to his three years in Gainesville, Speraw was the head coach at Pensacola Junior College (PJC) from 1987-90. At PJC, he led the Pirates to an 82-21 record and three consecutive Panhandle Conference titles. His 1989-90 team won 31 games and finished fifth nationally. The team's success that year earned Speraw national recognition. He was tabbed the NABC/Kodak National Junior College Coach of the Year, as well as the state's Coach of the Year.

Speraw also had a coaching stop at Florida Southern, serving as an assistant from 1982-87. The Moccasins posted a 100-46 record and made four appearances in the Division II NCAA Tournament, including a third-place finish in 1986.

Speraw and his wife, Tracy (an Iowa City native), have two sons, Drew and Dustin, and two daughters, Brooke and Bailey. Drew played for his dad at Central Florida for four years, completing his eligibility this past season. Brooke is currently a University of Iowa student.


  • Iowa Graduate Assistant 1979-80

  • Denver Assistant Coach 1980-82

  • Florida Southern Assistant Coach 1983-87

  • Pensacola Junior College Head Coach 1987-90

  • Florida Assistant Coach 1990-93

  • Central Florida Head Coach 1993-2010

What others reported on Kirk Speraw hire by Iowa coach Fran McCaffery:

Iowa hires former UCF coach Speraw as assistant ‎-
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) -- Iowa coach Fran McCaffery has hired former Central Florida coach Kirk Speraw as an assistant. Speraw was recently fired after 17 ...

Kirk Speraw Named to Fran McCaffery's Staff at Iowa ‎ - Bleacher Report

Hawkeye basketball: Kirk Speraw joins McCaffery's staff ‎ -

Kirk Speraw joins Iowa's men's basketball staff – this seems like ... ‎ - Gazette Online (blog)

In closing, Kirk Speraw was one of my first "fan" favorites, when he was a basketball player under coach Lute Olson in the 1970s. Coach McCaffery has announced two of his three assistants for the Iowa Basketball program. Speculation is high about a couple of other former Iowa players filling the third assistant position, as well as the graduate assistant position.


Thursday, April 8, 2010

Iowa's new basketball coach Fran McCaffery hires first assistant coach: Andrew Francis

IOWA CITY, IA - - University of Iowa Head Basketball Coach Fran McCaffery has named Andrew Francis an assistant coach on his basketball staff. The hiring of Francis was announced Thursday and becomes effective immediately.

"I am very happy to have Andrew be part of the Hawkeye basketball family," said McCaffery.

"I've worked closely with Andrew for three years and he is the complete package. He's a tremendous coach and excellent recruiter. His scouting reports are incredibly thorough and his on-the-court teaching is spectacular."

"I'm excited and honored to have this opportunity at a great institution like the University of Iowa," said Francis. "I have met so many wonderful people during the interview process. It's been a calming and welcoming feeling that I have received from everybody since arriving on campus. I felt welcome even before I got here. Being able to coach in such an incredible league like the Big Ten is exciting."

Francis served the last three years on McCaffery's staff as an assistant coach at Siena. While on the Saints' coaching staff, he helped guide Siena to three straight conference titles and NCAA Tournament berths, and four consecutive 20-plus win seasons. Francis helped coach six all-conference student-athletes, two Player of the Year honorees and the league's Sixth Man of the Year.

He arrived at the Siena program after a two year stint at Villanova University, where he served as an administrative assistant/video coordinator on Jay Wright's staff.

While at Siena, Francis assisted in all aspects of the program, including: recruiting, player development and scouting.

A Brooklyn, NY, native, Francis joined the Wildcats' staff in August, 2005. He assisted the program in a variety of roles while directing the video operations of the basketball office.
Francis is a 1992 graduate of Brooklyn's Abraham Lincoln High School. He played basketball at Fulton Montgomery Community College in Johnstown, NY, before completing his college career under Coach Sidney Green at Long Island University-Southampton. Francis graduated in 1998 with a degree in marketing and management.

After a knee injury ended his professional playing career, Francis became a volunteer assistant coach at Concordia College. From 2003-05, he served as the head women's coach at Mt. St. Vincent College, compiling a 26-27 record. In addition, he served as a volunteer assistant coach for the Westchester Wildfire of the United States Basketball League.

Press Release from the University of Iowa