What attracted you to apply for the head coaching job?
My first experience in the Heart of America Athletic Conference was when I was an assistant over at (William) Jewell (College), so I was familiar with Baker from my time there. I think this is one of the best conferences in the country at the NAIA level. There are a lot of good coaches and good programs in this league, so the challenge of that was obviously an (attraction). And then any time that I had been on campus, I had just always been impressed with what it looks like here and also anyone that I had ever met from here (has been) just extremely nice.
What are you most excited about?
Well, I think it is always about the players and my relationship with the student-athletes. Having a chance to spend some time with the guys when I came in for the interview, I obviously was very impressed with them. All of my conversations that I have had, whether it was with (Athletic Director) Theresa (Yetmar) or with (assistant) coach (Terry) Zerr about the guys returning, they’ve had nothing but positive things to say. So since I’ve been here since Friday now, that is kind of what I’m working on now is just getting to start building that relationship with them and laying down expectations of what we are looking for as we move forward. It is a really solid group of guys (coming) back. I’m looking forward to working with them. Obviously we’ll need to add a few more pieces for next year, which is kind of currently in the works, but I definitely just want to try to continue recruiting good, solid kids.
What are your expectations for next season?
I think our expectations will always be the same, no matter if it is my first year or what, but I am used to winning and I firmly believe that that is what we’re in this business for and those are always the expectations. We’re kind of really just going to break it down in the standpoint of just wanting to continue to develop our guys, whether that is academically or athletically as well. If we continue to work and get better and work hard every day, winning and losing will take care of itself. It is our job as coaches to recruit solid student-athletes and if we work hard, all of the winning and losing will take place.
What kind of coaching style can fans expect from you?
We’re going to get after it. We will play hard. There is no doubt about that. Our guys will play hard. We’re going to work extremely hard. There is only one way in my mind to see. When we recruit, we are going to recruit guys that are passionate about the game of basketball and love to play. So we will play hard and I think fans will see that. As far as style and everything else, we’re going to adapt to our personnel. I like to be able to teach the game and play a lot of different ways, so we’re going to have guys that can do that and they’re going to learn how to do that.