Chris Holtmann Named Big Ten Coach of The Year

By James Grega on February 26, 2018 at 5:15 pm
Chris Holtmann

After leading Ohio State to the brink of a Big Ten regular season title, Chris Holtmann has been named the conference coach of the year. 

Holtmann inherited a team in early June that would be without three of its four leading scorers, and at one point had less than 10 scholarship players on the roster. After piecing together a roster with a high school senior (Musa Jallow) and a Michigan graduate transfer (Andrew Dakich), Holtmann led his team to a 24-7, 15-3 regular season that ended in a second place finish in the league, after most preseason projections had the Buckeyes finishing outside the top-10 in the conference.

Holtmann is also a candidate to win the Naismith Coach of the Year award, as he was named a semifinalist for the honor on Feb. 23.

Ohio State's 2017-18 season featured two victories over top-three teams, as the Buckeyes knocked off both No. 1 Michigan State and No. 3 Purdue this year, and rose to as high as No. 8 in the country in the Associated Press poll. 

The last Ohio State coach to win Big Ten Coach of the Year was Thad Matta, who took home the award three times, with his final honor coming in 2010 when he shared with Purdue coach Matt Painter.

Holtmann's star player, Keita Bates-Diop, was named Big Ten Player of the Year on Monday, while Jae'Sean Tate and Kaleb Wesson also received conference awards.

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