News broke Wednesday that lead Iowa State assistant, Doc Sadler, had accepted the head coach position at Southern Miss. The former UTEP and Nebraska head man spent one year in Ames on Fred Hoiberg's staff and prior to that, served as the director of basketball operations at Kansas.
Truth be told, I'm sad to see Doc go, but you can't blame the guy for wanting to get back to leading a program. Known as a defensive guru, he was charged with the task of making Iowa State a better defensive team this last season and according to the advanced metrics, he did just that. We also saw the Cyclones exclusively move to a method of doubling in the post, which was occasionally baffling, but overall, an effective tactic against Big 12 foes.
This marks the third lead assistant under Hoiberg to leave Ames in four seasons. Bobby Lutz left after year one to be closer to his family as an assistant at North Carolina State. T.J. Otzelberger left after the 2012-2013 season to join Washington's staff in the hopes of positioning himself better for a head gig, and now Sadler. Cornell Mann and Matt Abdelmassih remain on staff, however, so it's not as if there's no continuity.
If you head over to Cyclone Fanatic, Chris Williams has already put together a list of possible replacements, which makes you wonder which type of guy The Mayor will target to replace Sadler. Lutz and Doc were both former head coaches that were thought to bring game planning and developing of young players to the table, while Otzelberger was regarded as a recruiting wiz. Abdelmassih seems to have assumed that lead recruiter role, so don't be surprised if Hoiberg pursues another grizzled coaching vet with years of bench experience. Stay tuned on that front.
In any event, I think I speak for all of us when I say that we'll miss Sadler's disheveled sideline appearance. His tie was always loosened, his belly always spilling over his trousers, and he just had the look of a divorced salesman starring into a glass of Dewar's at the hotel bar, and we loved him for it.
We at WRNL wish Doc all the best of luck and in our book, despite spending time with the Huskers and Jayhawks, he'll always be welcomed in Ames going forward.