Wyoming Hires Away UNC Bears Coach Jeff Linder
After leading the University of Northern Colorado to three-straight 20 win seasons in Greeley, Jeff Linder is heading north of the Colorado border to Laramie.
The University of Wyoming announced Linder as its 22nd men's basketball team head coach on Tuesday.
He'll now be part of Border War games against Colorado State University. The Cowboys went 9-24 last season including 2-16 in Mountain West Conference games.
Linder went 80-60 in his four seasons guiding the Bears, winning the 2017-18 College Invitational Tournament. He was named the 2018-19 Big Sky Coach of The Year.
The Lafayette, Colorado native has a wife Kelli and four children: two daughters, Adison and Makalyn, and two sons, Jordan and Devon.
The new Wyoming coach said this in press release:
"I'm extremely excited for the opportunity to be the men's basketball coach at the University of Wyoming. Wyoming has a rich basketball tradition which at a young age I was introduced to on the Sports Illustrated cover that featured Cowboy great, Fennis Dembo. From that time on growing up down the road in Denver, I was always rooting for the Cowboys. For me to now have the opportunity to lead this acclaimed program is an honor that I won't take for granted. I will work to build on the storied past built and laid before me and diligently work to make Wyoming basketball a force to be reckoned with. The University of Wyoming basketball job is an incredible fit for me and my family. Having grown up in the region and having coached in the Mountain West Conference it was almost too good to be true when Tom Burman called me. My staff and I will make recruiting Wyoming and the region a priority while scanning the globe for student-athletes who fit the characteristics we want in Cowboy basketball players.
Wyoming athletics director Tom Burman said this about Linder in the press release:
"Jeff (Linder) turned around the basketball program at Northern Colorado and developed his team into one of the premier programs in the Big Sky Conference.Jeff possesses many important qualities I was looking for in a new head coach for Cowboy Basketball. First and foremost, he is a proven winner as a head coach. Jeff also has great knowledge of the region and the Mountain West Conference. His brand of basketball will be great for our Cowboy fans to watch, as his teams play with great offensive efficiency and play a tough hard-nosed style of defense. We couldn't be more excited to have Jeff lead Wyoming Basketball into a new era."