2013 National Jim Phelan Coach of the Year
2013 Pac-12 Coach of the Year
A 2013 National Coach of the Year selection, Dana Altman is the 19th head coach in the history of the University of Oregon men’s basketball program. He is 73-37 in three seasons in Eugene and 483-280 in 24 seasons as a head coach at the NCAA Division I level in stints at Oregon, Creighton, Kansas State and Marshall.
In his first three years at Oregon, Altman has led the Ducks to three consecutive 20-win seasons and three postseason appearances, including the 2013 NCAA Sweet 16. It marks just the third time in school history UO has produced consecutive seasons of 20+ wins. Altman now has 15 seasons of 20+ wins to his credit (11 at Creighton, three at Oregon, one at Kansas State).
Altman’s 2012-13 Oregon Ducks became the first UO team since 2008 to qualify for the NCAA Tournament. The Ducks finished the season 28-9 and won the Pac-12 Tournament. Altman was named the Pac-12 Coach of the Year before going on to earn Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year honors. Senior E.J. Singler was an all-league first team selection, while Damyean Dotson claimed a place on the Pac-12 All-Freshman team. Johnathan Loyd was named Most Outstanding Player of the Pac-12 Tournament as the honors were spread around nearly the entire team. Senior Arsalan Kazemi was a Pac-12 all-defensive pick before going on to become a second round draft choice of the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers. Singler was a free agent signee by the Portland Trailblazers.
During the 2011-12 season, Altman led the Ducks to a 24-10 overall record and an 13-5 Pac-12 Conference mark which was good for a share of second place in the final league standings. The Ducks earned a bid to the National Invitation Tournament and recorded victories over LSU and Iowa before falling at top-seed Washington in the tournament quarterfinals.
Under Altman’s tutelage, four UO players were recognized as part of the 2012 Pac-12 All-Conference teams. Devoe Joseph became the first Duck since the 2006-07 season to be named first team all-conference. Singler was named to the all-conference second team and NABC All-District 20 second team, while Garrett Sim earned honorable mention all-league recognition and Tony Woods was named honorable mention all-defensive team.
In his first season at Oregon, Altman led the Ducks to just the 12th season of 20+ victories in the history of the program. He became just the third UO head coach to tally 20+ wins in his first season on the job. Oregon went 21-18 overall and 7-11 in Pac-12 play which earned them a seventh-place finish in the final league standings.
Altman posted the second-highest win total of any first-year UO head coach. Only John Warren (30 wins in 1944-45) posted more in his first year on the sidelines. The 2011 postseason included a pair of wins at the Pacific Life Pac-10 Conference Tournament, highlighted by a 76-59 upset win over No. 2-seed UCLA in the quarterfinals. Oregon participated in the 2011 College Basketball Invitational, defeating Altman’s former team – Creighton – in the best-of-three championship series.
Altman arrived at UO after spending 16 seasons at Creighton where he became the school’s all-time winningest coach with a record of 327-176 (.650). He led the Blue Jays to 13 consecutive postseason appearances, a stretch of 11 straight seasons with 20-plus wins, all while producing 10 or more league victories in each of the last 14 seasons. Those three feats were unmatched in the 103 years of the Missouri Valley Conference.
He won four Coach-of-the-Year awards from three different conferences in a span of 13 seasons, including back-to-back MVC coaching honors while he was at the Omaha, Neb., educational institution in 2001 and 2002. Altman was a finalist for the Naismith National Coach of the Year Award and was named the NABC District 12 and USBWA District VI Coach of the Year following the 2002-03 campaign.
Creighton participated in seven NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournaments and five National Invitation Tournaments under Altman, advancing to the second round of the NCAA championships in both the 1998-99 and 2001-02 seasons. He led the school to a MVC regular-season title in 2000-01 - its first in 10 years. The Bluejays posted a school-record 29 wins in 2002-03, finishing the season 15th in the Associated Press poll and 23rd in the coaches’ voting.
Altman finished his career at Creighton ranking third all-time on the MVC list of all-time wins (327), trailing only Basketball Hall of Fame coaches Henry Iba (486) and Eddie Hickey (337). In 2007, he was one of 10 coaches named as part of the MVC’s All-Centennial Team. His teams claimed shares of three regular-season Missouri Valley Conference championships (including the 2008-09 crown) and six conference post-season tournament titles.
Student-athletes under his direction at CU earned six All-America honors on the court and four Academic All-America laurels in the classroom. Three players he coached at Creighton - Kyle Korver, Rodney Buford and Anthony Tolliver - have played in the NBA.
Along the way, Creighton established school records for most victories in a two-year (52), three-year (76) and four-year span (99). From 1998-99 through 2008-09, Creighton was one of just six schools to win 20 or more games each of those seasons, an elite list that also included Duke, Florida, Gonzaga, Kansas and Syracuse.
In addition, Altman’s teams ranked in the top 30 nationally for attendance in his final seven years at Creighton. Altman became the 15th head coach in Creighton history following the 1993-94 season after four successful years as the head coach at Kansas State and a season at Marshall.
Hired by Creighton on March 31, 1994, Altman inherited a team that posted a 7-22 ledger the year before his arrival and led the Bluejays to a slightly improved 7-19 record in 1994-95 before his 1995-96 squad jumped to 14-15. In 1996-97, Altman’s team was 15-15 and followed with another substantial jump to 18-10 and a bid to the NIT in 1997-98. Altman compiled a 68-54 record in four seasons (1990-94) at Kansas State University. During that time, Altman led the Wildcats to three straight postseason tourneys and was named the Big Eight Conference Coach of the Year after leading KSU to a 19-11 record and an appearance in the NCAA Tournament in 1993.
Altman’s final Kansas State club turned heads nationally with a 68-64 win at No. 1 Kansas on Jan. 17, 1994. K-State eventually advanced to play in the NIT Final Four. Altman’s success at KSU followed him from a brief head coaching stint at Marshall where he was named Southern Conference Coach of the Year in 1990.
While head coach at Southeast Junior College in Fairbury, Neb., his first team (1982-83) rolled to a 29-6 record and a third-place finish in the junior college national tournament and Altman was honored as both Region 9 and the Nebraska College Coach of the Year.
In 1983, Altman accepted the head coaching position at Moberly (Mo.) Junior College, with a three-year run resulting in a staggering 94-18 record (25-9 in 1983-84; 35-5 with a third-place finish at the national tourney in 1984-85; and a 34-4 mark in 1985-86 with a sixth-place finish at nationals).
He was named Region 16 Coach of the Year in both the 1984-85 and 1985-86 seasons, and was also a finalist for 1986 National Junior College Athletic Association Coach of the Year accolades. Altman’s playing career began at Southeast Junior College in 1976, where he captained teams to a 22-10 mark in his freshman year and a 26-5 record in his sophomore season.
Altman completed his undergraduate education and playing career at Eastern New Mexico University. After earning his associate degree in business administration from Southeast in 1978, Altman graduated magna cum laude from Eastern New Mexico in 1980 with his bachelor’s degree in the same field.
Altman received his master of business administration degree from Western (Colo.) State in 1981. He served as an assistant coach on the Western State staff from 1980-82.
At Wilber (Neb.) High School, Altman was a two-sport letterman, earning all-conference honors as a quarterback on the football team and as a guard in basketball. Altman was born June 16, 1958, in Crete, Neb. He and his wife, the former Reva Phillips of Stanton, Neb., have three sons, Jordan, Chase and Spencer, and one daughter, Audra.