Inside Iowa State
August 7, 1998
Eustachy lands in Hilton
by Steve Jones
Like his predecessor at ISU, new Cyclone men's basketball coach Larry Eustachy has a good friend in the National Basketball Association. But don't look for Eustachy to jump to the pros.
Eustachy was introduced July 29 as ISU's 16th head basketball coach. The California native comes to ISU from Utah State University, where he was named the 1998 Big West Conference coach of the year.
The 42-year-old Eustachy replaces Tim Floyd, who left ISU for the NBA's Chicago Bulls. Floyd went to Chicago in part because of his long-standing friendship with Bulls' general manager Jerry Krause. Eustachy is a good friend of Jerry Sloan, coach of the NBA's Utah Jazz.
But Eustachy said he has no interest in leaving the college game for the pros. "This is common ground for me," he said. "The NBA would be foreign."
"This is not a stop for me," Eustachy added. "This is it for me. There will be no shortcuts. It will be very long-term for me."
Eustachy comes to ISU with a flashy 159-86 coaching record at Idaho and Utah State. He has never had a losing season in eight years as a head coach. In five seasons at Utah State, he was 98-53 and won 70 percent (60-26) of his Big West games. The Aggies went to the 1998 NCAA tournament and the 1995 National Invitational Tournament under Eustachy.
"This is a great day for Iowa State basketball," said athletic director Gene Smith, who offered the job to Eustachy July 27, only five days after Floyd's resignation.
Eustachy was one of Floyd's assistant coaches in the 1986-87 season at Idaho. The new ISU coach also has been an assistant at Mississippi State, Utah, Ball State and Citrus College, a California junior college where he played point guard for two seasons. Eustachy later earned a B.S. degree in physical education at Long Beach State.
Leaving Utah State was a difficult decision, Eustachy said, because he liked the university and he believed Logan, Utah, was a good town in which to raise his family.
"It took something extremely special to get me to leave what we had [at Utah State]," Eustachy said. "We are in [Iowa] because of the people in this state and the people in Ames. There is nothing like Utah people and there is nothing like Iowa people. I'm very familiar with Ames and Iowa State because of my relationship with Tim Floyd. I've just heard fantastic things."
Eustachy and his wife, Stacy, are the parents of two sons, Hayden, 6, and Evan, 4.
Eustachy's Cyclone teams will remind fans of Floyd's squads. Both coaches stress defense and half-court offenses. Eustachy's teams, however, will try to speed up the offense and push the ball up the court. What's most important to Eustachy is putting good citizens and good students on the Hilton Coliseum court.
"We're going to recruit student-athletes," Eustachy said. "They're going to go to the study table, they're going to represent this university in a well-mannered way and at the same time be able to help us win some basketball games. Character is everything. School is everything. Basketball is second."
Eustachy said he would not rush to assemble a coaching staff. His first priority is recruiting players for the 1999-2000 season.
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