Nine Names To Watch For In Colorado State’s Expected Head Coaching Vacancy
It was reported Thursday that Larry Eustachy will likely be terminated in the coming days
Colorado State appears to be headed towards a coaching search in the near future
Reports surfaced Thursday that Colorado State expects to part ways with head coach Larry Eustachy in the coming days.
With that in mind, it’s likely time for the CSU program to begin mapping out possible head coaching candidates to usher in the new area of Rams basketball.
We have gathered nine names to watch out for as Colorado State begins its head coaching search. Don’t be surprised if you hear some of the following coaches mentioned along the way.
Current position: South Dakota head coach
NBC Sports already reported that Smith and Drake’s Niko Medved have been linked to the Colorado State vacancy. Smith was the director of operations and assistant from 2007 to 2012, so his familiarity with Fort Collins is already strong. He has close ties with former Colorado State head coach Tim Miles, and is off to a 21-6 start with South Dakota this season, eyeing the program’s first-ever NCAA Tournament berth.
Current position: Drake head coach
Another former Colorado State assistant coach, Niko Medved, was with the CSU program from 2007 to 2013. Since then, Medved has gone on to secure head coaching positions at Furman (62-70 in four seasons) and Drake (13-12 in his first season). He was named the 2017 SoCon Coach of the Year after guiding Furman to a 23-11 season.
Current position: Weber State head coach
With ties to the area, sustained success as a mid-major head coach, and eight seasons with the Colorado State program, Weber State’s Randy Rahe could be the perfect fit as Larry Eustachy’s successor. He’s been an assistant at Colorado College, Colorado, Denver, Colorado State, Utah State and Utah over a 29-year span before notching three NCAA Tournament bids and a .645 winning percentage at Weber State. He’s a four-time Big Sky Coach of the Year and helped develop Damian Lillard into the Portland Trail Blazers superstar he is today.
Current position: San Antonio Spurs assistant coach
The obstacles are obvious, but few candidates, if any, would make more sense than Becky Hammon. A Colorado State alum, Olympian, six-time WNBA All-Star, and assistant coach under Gregg Popovich in San Antonio, Hammon’s name has to be included in a CSU candidate list. Already the first full-time female assistant in the four major sports, her retired jersey inside Moby Arena could be even more meaningful if she were to coach in the same building.
Current position: South Dakota State head coach
Otzelberger has reached the point in his career in which his name will be attached to most high-major or strong mid-major head coaching vacancies. He has spent time with Iowa State and Washington as an assistant before taking over the head coaching duties at South Dakota State in 2016. Likely, Otzelberger will take SDSU to the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive season. He’s highly regarded in head coaching circles, and has displayed his ability to develop superstars like Mike Daum in a short period.
Current position: TCU assistant coach
One of three finalists for the San Jose State head coaching vacancy last summer, Patrick appears primed to make the jump to the head coaching position. He has ties to Australia as both a player and recruiter, signing Patty Mills and Matthew Dellavedova to Saint Mary’s and eventual No. 1 NBA Draft selection Ben Simmons to LSU as an assistant. Patrick is becoming an increasingly formidable candidate as a head coach.
Current position: Florida Gulf Coast head coach
Joe Dooley’s name pops up whenever there’s a vacancy, so it only makes sense that the five-year Mountain West assistant receives a mention. Dooley was an assistant with New Mexico and Wyoming in the early 2000s and has also spent time with South Carolina, East Carolina and Kansas. In four seasons and change as Andy Enfield’s successor at Florida Gulf Coast, Dooley is 110-54 and will hope to send FGCU to its third consecutive NCAA Tournament.
Current position: UT Arlington head coach
After nearly landing the New Mexico gig (along with the aforementioned Dooley), Scott Cross might cash in on his UTA success with the Colorado State opening. Dooley graduated from UT Arlington in 1998 and immediately became an assistant with the program until being elevated to head coach in 2006. Since then, Cross has recorded a .580 winning percentage including four 20+ win seasons and an NCAA Tournament bid. The 2017 Sun Belt Coach of the Year has missed out on the league’s autobid a few more times than expected, but Cross is still an attractive head coaching candidate that could be on the market very soon.
Current position: Gonzaga assistant coach
Lloyd is tabbed as the coach-in-waiting under Mark Few (age 55) in Spokane, but at 43 years old with nearly two decades under a Hall of Fame coach, you have to wonder how long before Lloyd jumps at a head coaching position. Few does not appear to be slowing down anytime soon, and Lloyd’s ability to recruit international talent (Poland’s Przemek Karnowski, Canada’s Kelly Olynyk, Lithuania’s Domantas Sabonis) is a major boon.