Athletics & Recreation / Magazine Feature

DU names Joe Scott men’s basketball coach

Joe Scott has been named head men’s basketball coach at the University of Denver, Athletic Director Peg Bradley-Doppes announced today. Scott will assume his responsibilities at DU immediately.

Scott returns to Colorado after serving the last three seasons as head coach at Princeton, where he led the Tigers to a 38-45 (.458) mark including a second-place finish in the Ivy League in 2005–06. The Tigers led the nation in scoring defense (52.9 ppg) in 2006–07.

Scott, 41, replaced John Thompson III at Princeton after serving four years as the head coach at Air Force. Scott, the 2004 Mountain West Conference coach of the year, led Air Force to a 22-7 record and its first NCAA tournament appearance in 42 years in 2004, when the Falcons won their first and only MWC regular-season title with a 12-2 record.

Air Force led the nation in scoring defense from 2000–03 under Scott’s tutelage. He posted a 51-63 (.447) overall mark in four seasons at Air Force and is considered the mastermind behind Air Force’s revival. The current Air Force seniors were all recruited by Scott and are now enjoying a strong run in the National Invitation Tournament under head coach Jeff Bzdelik.

“Today is a new day for the University of Denver and its men’s basketball program,” Bradley-Doppes said. “We’re thrilled to name Joe Scott as our new men’s basketball coach. Throughout college basketball, programs continue to search for the next Joe Scott. Today we are excited to bring the original back to Colorado. Joe represents everything that we were looking for in a leader. He’s a strong recruiter, a winner and a tireless worker who is committed to bringing out the best in his student-athletes on the court and in the classroom.”

Scott served as an assistant coach at Princeton for eight seasons under legendary Hall of Fame head coach Pete Carril (1992–96) and Bill Carmody (1996–2000). The Tigers posted a 163-61 (.728) overall record, including three Ivy League titles and five consecutive postseason appearances with Scott as an assistant coach. The Tigers averaged 23 wins with Scott serving as Carmody’s top assistant coach from 1996–2000.

“The head coaching position at the University of Denver represents a great opportunity for me both professionally and personally,” Scott said. “DU showed a real interest, a genuine commitment and a high level of understanding of what it takes to be competitive in Division I basketball. We’re going to work hard every day to build our program and define the Denver brand of basketball. I think the way we do things matches up really well with the vision and mission of the University of Denver.”

Scott started his coaching career as an assistant coach under Wayne Szoke at Monmouth University (New Jersey) in 1991–92. Scott helped the Hawks to their first 20-win season since 1981–82 prior to accepting an assistant coaching position at Princeton.

Scott and his wife, Leah, have two sons, Ben, 5, and Jack, 3.

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