Indiana hires former Knicks, Hawks coach Mike Woodson as head coach

Jason Owens
·2-min read

Indiana University has hired former Atlanta Hawks and New York Knicks coach Mike Woodson as head coach.

The program announced the news Sunday afternoon, confirming multiple reports from earlier in the day.

Stadium's Jeff Goodman reports that Woodson had been in the mix for the job since it opened and became a priority for Indiana after Boston Celtics head coach Brad Stevens and Ohio State head coach Chris Holtmann turned it down.

The position opened on March 15 when Indiana fired Archie Miller. The Hoosiers finished 12-15 this season and failed to make the NCAA tournament in Miller's four seasons as head coach.

Woodson's first college job

An Indianapolis native, Woodson played for Indiana from 1976 to 1980 before embarking on an 11-year NBA career as a player. He's worked as an assistant and head coach in the NBA most seasons since 1996, including a six-year stint as Hawks head coach and three seasons as Knicks head coach. The Indiana job marks his first experience coaching at the college level.

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 16:  New York Knicks head coach Mike Woodson looks on during the first half against the Atlanta Hawks at Madison Square Garden on November 16, 2013 in New York City. The Hawks defeat the Knicks 110-90.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Mike Woodson will reportedly be the next head coach at Indiana. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

IU also bringing Thad Matta on board

Indiana is also hiring former Ohio State, Xavier and Butler head coach Thad Matta as an associate athletic director for men's basketball administration, The Indianapolis Star's Gregg Doyel reports. Matta has years of college coaching experience, having worked as an assistant or head coach most years since 1990.

His most recent experience is a 13-year stint with Ohio State from 2004 to 2017. The Buckeyes made the NCAA tournament seven straight seasons during Matta's tenure.

Hoosiers continue to seek return to glory

Indiana is one of the winningest programs in college basketball history, having won five national championships. The program has declined in recent years, having failed to advance to the Final Four since 2002 or make the NCAA tournament since 2016. Indiana's last national championship was in 1987.

Woodson will be the sixth head coach at Indiana since the departure of Bob Knight. He follows Mike Davis, Kelvin Sampson, Dan Dakich, Tom Crean and Miller, who have all failed to approach the success Indiana experienced under Knight before his ouster amid scandal in 2000.

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