Eric Musselman

Muselman Bio (PDF – Print Version)

Former NBA and University of Nevada head coach Eric Musselman has been named as the head men’s basketball coach at the University of Arkansas, Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Hunter Yurachek announced on Sunday. Musselman has more than 30 years of coaching experience, including 14 years as a head coach in the NBA, NCAA and CBA.

“Eric Musselman is a coach that has had experience at every level of basketball from the NCAA to the NBA,” Yurachek said. “He was practically born into the game and his passion for basketball is unmistakable. He has been successful throughout his career, including the remarkable job he did in returning the University of Nevada into a perennial NCAA Tournament team. Coach Musselman is high-energy and possesses an extremely high basketball IQ. He has a great attention to detail and has structured his programs to develop players individually while building a successful team. I am pleased to welcome Coach Musselman, his wife Danyelle and his family to the Razorback family.”

In the past four years as Nevada’s head coach, Musselman won at least 24 games each season (24, 28, 29 and 29) to post a 110-34 record and .764 winning percentage – sixth-best among active Division I coaches. Prior to entering the collegiate head coaching ranks, Musselman was a head coach for seven professional teams, including two seasons with the Golden State Warriors (2002-04) and one with the Sacramento Kings (2006-07). He has won over 550 games as a professional head coach with an overall winning percentage of .624 (566-340).

“My family and I couldn’t be more excited to be coming to the University of Arkansas,” Coach Musselman said. “The opportunity to be a part of the rich tradition of Razorback Basketball and to experience the passion of the Razorback fans is something that I am very much looking forward to. I am appreciative of the professional manner in which Hunter Yurachek conducted the search and am grateful for the support of Chancellor Steinmetz and all of those affiliated with the University of Arkansas. I am ready to get to work with our student-athletes to prepare our program to compete at the highest level of college basketball.”

At Nevada, Musselman led the Wolf Pack to Mountain West regular-season titles in each of the last three years. The Wolf Pack won the CBI (College Basketball Invitational) postseason tournament in his first year as head coach while adding a Mountain West tournament title in 2017 to secure the program’s first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2007. The past two seasons, Nevada earned at-large berths to the NCAA Tournament as a seventh seed each time.

In addition to his teams’ success, numerous individual honors have been bestowed upon his players. Caleb Martin was a two-time All-America selection (2018 and ’19), a two-time district Player of the Year honoree and 2018 Mountain West Player of the Year. Overall, 13 All-Mountain West honors were earned by Wolf Pack players over the last four seasons.

“I applaud Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Hunter Yurachek on the process to identify and ultimately select Coach Eric Musselman as the next Razorback’s Men’s Basketball coach,” Chancellor Joe Steinmetz said. “The process was rigorous and thorough. I had the opportunity to speak to Coach Musselman a few days ago and I am confident that he will be a great leader for our basketball team and contribute to the players growth as athletes and as successful students.”

AS NEVADA HEAD COACH
At Nevada, Musselman led the Wolf Pack to Mountain West regular-season titles in each of the last three years. The Wolf Pack won the CBI (College Basketball Invitational) postseason tournament in his first year as head coach while adding a Mountain West tournament title in 2017 to secure the program’s first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2007. The past two seasons, Nevada earned at-large berths to the NCAA Tournament as a seventh seed each time.

In addition to his teams’ success, numerous individual honors have been bestowed upon his players. Caleb Martin was a two-time All-America selection (2018 and ’19), a two-time district Player of the Year honoree and 2018 Mountain West Player of the Year. Overall, 13 All-Mountain West honors were earned by Wolf Pack players over Musselman’s four seasons.

This past year, Nevada was ranked among the nation’s top 20 all season – including 16 weeks inside the top 10 – and won 29 games for the second straight year, finishing 29-5, to tie the school record for most wins in season. He was one of 15 finalists for the Werner Ladder Naismith Men’s College Coach of the Year Award. The team featured Martin, who was named first team All-Mountain West along with Jordan Caroline while Cody Martin was tabbed third team all-conference. All three were named to the MW All-Defensive team while Jazz Johnson was the league’s Sixth Man of the Year.

The previous season (2017-18), Musselman led the Nevada basketball program to a place it had not been since 2004, winning 29 games (29-8) and reaching the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 for just the second time in school history. The Wolf Pack upset No. 2 seed Cincinnati but fell just a point short of reaching the school’s first Elite 8, falling 69-68 to Loyola Chicago.

Musselman earned four Coach of the Year honors in 2018 after the Pack’s successful season, including MW coaches and media, USBWA District VIII and NABC District 17.

In addition to Musselman earning numerous honors several of his players hauled in top honors after the outstanding season. Caleb Martin garnered the first of his two All-America and District Player of the Year awards while adding MW Player of the Year, MW Newcomer of the Year and MW first team. Caroline was selected to the MW first team, USBWA District VIII team and NABC District 17 first team. Cody Martin earned MW Defensive Player of the Year honors, was selected the MW second team and the MW Defensive team. Kendall Stephens earned third-team MW honors after setting the conference and school record with 126 made 3-pointers. Lindsey Drew joined Caleb Martin on the MW Defensive team.

In year two at Nevada, Musselman led the Pack to a 28-5 ledger, the program’s first MW regular season and tournament titles as Musselman was named the USBWA District VIII Coach of the Year.

Several Wolf Pack players earned postseason honors. Marcus Marshall was named to the All-MW first team and MW Newcomer of the Year after breaking the then Nevada single-season record with 115 3’s made. Cameron Oliver earned first team honors, Caroline earned second team honors and D.J. Fenner earned second team honors.

In his first season at Nevada, Musselman transformed the culture of the men’s basketball team. Musselman led the Wolf Pack to a 24-14 record and the CBI Championship, defeating Morehead State 85-82 in overtime. BleacherReport.com named him their Mountain West Coach of the Year as the Pack’s 15-win improvement from nine wins to 24 ranked the team as the sixth-most improved NCAA I squad in the country.

Three members of the Pack earned postseason honors. Marqueze Coleman was voted second team All-MW and NABC All-District. Tyron Criswell was selected as the MW Sixth Man of the Year by the conference media. Cameron Oliver set a school freshman mark and MW freshman record with his 99 blocks. Oliver was selected as the Freshman of the Year by the MW media, adding second team All-MW honors and being named to the league’s All-Defensive team.

AS NCAA DIVISION I ASSISTANT COACH
Prior to Nevada, Musselman spent three seasons as an assistant coach at Arizona State and LSU. In 2013 the Sun Devils advanced to the second round of the NIT and earned a trip to the NCAA Tournament in 2014. The 2015 Tiger squad also advanced to the NCAA Tournament.

The 2013 ASU squad improved by 12 wins and advanced to postseason play for the first time in three years. He was promoted to associate head coach prior to the 2013-14 season. While at ASU, Musselman coached 2013 second-round NBA selection Carrick Felix, 2012-13 Pac-12 co-Freshman of the Year Jahii Carson and Jordan Bachynski who led the nation in blocks in 2013-14.

In his only season at LSU, he coached two first team All-SEC selections in Jarrell Martin and Jordan Mickey. Mickey was also selected to the SEC All-Defensive team.

AS A PROFESSIONAL COACH
Musselman has been a head coach in the CBA, the United States Basketball League (USBL) and the NBADL along with the two NBA head coaching stops. His teams have collected six division titles and have advanced to the postseason seven times. He coached 24 players that went on to play in the NBA. Five times he was named CBA all-star coach. In addition to mentoring players to NBA careers, three of his former assistant coaches are current NBA head coaches, including Jim Boylan (Chicago Bulls), Scotty Brooks (Washington Wizards) and David Fitzdale (New York Knicks).

Musselman’s first head coaching job came at the age of 23 when he was hired by the Rapid City Thrillers of the Continental Basketball Association in 1989. He was the youngest coach in CBA history and the fastest to win 100 games.

He led the USBL Florida Sharks to a 53-3 record in two seasons and a league championship which earned him USBL Coach of the Year honors.

After working as an assistant under Doc Rivers and Hall of Fame coach Chuck Daly, he was named the head coach of the Golden State Warriors in 2002. He led the Warriors to 38 wins, a team-high in more than 10 years, and was runner-up in the NBA Coach of Year voting. He also coached the Warriors during the 2003-04 season.

Following a year as an assistant with the Memphis Grizzlies under Mike Fratello, he coached the Sacramento Kings for the 2006-07 season.

Musselman made his first stop in Reno for the 2010-11 season when he was head coach for the NBA D-League’s Bighorns and led them to their first Western Conference title in franchise history.

Musselman worked as an analyst on radio and television prior to coaching the Reno Bighorns (2010-11) and LA D-Fenders (2011-12) of the NBADL. In 2012 he earned Coach of the Year honors.

While coaching the Reno Bighorns in NBADL he worked with Jeremy Lin, Danny Green and Steve Novak who were called up to the NBA. Gerald Green, Malcom Thomas, Darius Morris, Jamario Moon and Courtney Fortson earned trips to the NBA when he coached them with the D-Fenders.

Musselman has experience coaching international basketball having served as the head coach of the Dominican Republic National Team (2010-11), The US and Team China in the Adidas Global Experience (2009, 2010) and The Venezuela National Team (2011-13).

PERSONAL
Born in Ashland, Ohio he attended high school in Brecksville south of Cleveland. He attended the University of San Diego and helped the Toreros to a 24-6 record as a senior and a trip to the NCAA Tournament While at USD he was named to the West Coast Conference All-Academic team three times and the Toreros played in two NCAA Tournaments.

Musselman is married to Danyelle Sargent Musselman who has worked at ESPN, Fox Sports and the NFL Network as a broadcaster. Musselman has two sons Michael (22) and Matthew (17) and the couple has a daughter Mariah (8).

Musselman’s father Bill was also an NBA head coach and they were the first father-son combination to become head coaches in the NBA.

Eric Musselman's Collegiate Coaching Record

YearRecordConference RecordPostseason
2015-1624-1410-8 (4th MW)CBI Champion
2016-1728-714-4 (1st MW) ^ *NCAA 1st Round
2017-1829-815-3 (1st MW) ^NCAA Sweet 16
2019-1929-515-3 (1st MW) ^NCAA 1st Round
TOTALS110-3454-18

^ – regular season champion
* – tournament champion