UNLV coach TJ Otzelberger is expected to be named the next coach in Iowa State, sources confirmed to CBS Sports on Wednesday. The news was first reported by Las Vegas Review Journal.
Sources added that within the UNLV athletics department and men’s basketball program, they believe the movement is imminent. Without any significant last-minute barricade, Iowa State has secured its next coach. The 43-year-old Otzelberger spent the last two seasons in Las Vegas going 28-29. Prior to that, he coached South Dakota State for three seasons and made two NCAA tournaments with a 70-33 record.
The move came quickly – within 24 hours – after Iowa State officially fired Steve Prohm after his six years on the job. A source told CBS Sports that Iowa State should pay approx. $ 5.5 million to Prohm because of the firing of him and then could owe UNLV somewhere between $ 4-4.5 million for Otzelberger’s acquisition. On per. Buyout number is just north of $ 3 million. The huge difference of one million dollars plus depends on whether Iowa State can treat the buyout as a business expense (no tax rules will kick in) or whether the transaction is linked to taxable income (which would raise it to $ 4 million quarter).
A timeline at the school that officially announces the Otzelberger lease is not known; a source speculated in Iowa State could delay a little longer from announcing a hiring so soon after the firing of Prohm, in addition to other important details still to be arranged. In September, ISU athletic director Jamie Pollard said his athletic department faced nearly a $ 30 million deficit due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Employees across the athletic department took pay cuts to stave off layoffs.
Otzelberger worked as an assistant at Iowa State from 2006-2013, then again for a season in 2015-16 before getting a South Dakota State job. Another source added that Pollard has long targeted Otzelberger as a replacement.
“It’s been done for about a month now,” the source said.
Iowa State is coming out of one of its worst seasons in history, going 2-22 overall and 0-18 in the Big 12.