Though former Iowa State Cyclones head men’s basketball coach Fred Hoiberg is now in the NBA and coaching the Chicago Bulls, he isn’t a man to not say goodbye.
The ISU alum returned to Ames and gave his final press conference for the school, which currently ranks No. 4 in the NBC Sports’ College Basketball Talk “Way Too Early” Rankings.
Though it may seem Hoiberg had little hesitation in leaving Ames, that couldn’t be further from the truth.
“Obviously, I would have been very happy being here my entire career and I wasn’t lying about that,” Hoiberg said. “I really would have. I’ve counted. Eleven teams have called me over the last three years and I’ve never really let them get anywhere, except for this last one.”
Hard to argue with Hoiberg’s logic in that case. After playing at Iowa State, he went on to enjoy a 10 year NBA playing career, four seasons of which were spent with the Bulls. Thus, after turning Iowa State around, going 115-56 (49-39 Big 12) with two Big 12 titles, perhaps he wants to do the same with the Bulls, though Chicago is just within reach of winning a championship.
Hoiberg also addressed who would be his successor, as many thought assistant T.J. Otzelberger would take over the moment Hoiberg left for Chicago. That situation has turned complicated, but Hoiberg made a statement on the matter.
“There’s been rumors that T.J. was brought back to be my successor, that’s not true. That’s absolutely not the case,” Hoiberg said. “I brought T.J. back because of a great amount of success I have for him and the great job that he did for me in my early years here. I think T.J. will be a terrific coach, there’s no doubt in my mind. But again, Jamie is the guy I am confident will make the right hire.
Either way, it was a heartfelt goodbye by Hoiberg and he will surely be missed by his players and the university. Watch the press conference and prepare to get hit RIGHT in the feels.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports