Well Nebraska, you got your man. Former Iowa State and Chicago Bulls head coach, Fred Hoiberg is officially the head coach of nebrasketball.
Coming from an Iowa State fan, Nebraska fans have a lot to love about this hire. Fred is one of the best coaching candidates that have come available on the coaching market in a long time. Many schools and NBA teams were interested in Hoiberg. Rumors swirled he would be the next coach at schools from UCLA to back to Iowa State, until a couple weeks ago when Nebraska’s name was thrown into the ring. Hoiberg was even rumored with Kansas if the job was to open. As an Iowa State fan, I would much rather see Hoiberg at Nebraska coaching against and hopefully beating Iowa, over going to Kansas and competing and hopefully losing to Iowa State. Returning to Iowa State was never an option in my opinion. Contrary to some Cyclone fans who wanted to see the Mayor return, Iowa State has done just fine since he moved on with Steve Prohm. Prohm is a better fit for the Cyclones at this point in time.
As Fred stated in his introductory press conference he has great ties to the city of Lincoln and to the University of Nebraska. He was born in Lincoln before moving to Ames when he was two. His grandfather coached the Huskers in the 50’s and 60’s. His other grandfather worked as a history professor at Nebraska for three decades. His niece was hired by Tim Miles to work in the basketball department and so on and so on. The point is, Fred has ties to the Huskers and wants to be the coach there. He told reporters he hopes this is his last coaching gig. And at only 46 years of age and still looking like he could go a few more years in the league, this is a big statement.
As I have stated I am a Cyclones fan and always have been. Growing up in Iowa, it was easy to hate Nebraska. It’s what almost everyone does there. But I have had an appreciation for Nebrasketball since the day I first saw a guy by the name of Terran Petteway play for the Huskers. I’m sure you all remember him. He was fast paced and crafty with the ball. He reminded me a lot of a player with the right skill set who would have great success in a Hoiberg led team.
That is the style of play Fred has brought with him to every team he has coached. A fast paced, run and gun type of play that is fun to watch.
With a high-profile coach coming in, expectations will undoubtedly be brought with him. Fans should not expect the immediate success Fred had at Iowa State. His first season was only a .500 record season that was actually very good for the roster depth they had. The ones who did play were some of the most talented in his tenure, but lacked any real depth to help in a long season. The next year they made the NCAA tournament.
Do I think Husker fans can expect them to be in the tournament by the second year of his tenure?
With the way that transfers have become a huge part of college game it is entirely possible, but this Huskers roster lost a lot of very talented seniors that could have strived in his offense.
At the end of the day, for what it’s worth, I am very happy Fred is a Husker. He will bring a lot to the table and have great success at Nebraska. My Cyclones are in the perfect position and I wish nothing but the best to the Mayor.