College Hoops

Wyoming hiring Sundance Wicks as new basketball coach

Wyoming hiring Sundance Wicks as new basketball coach

Wyoming has hired former assistant Sundance Wicks as the Cowboys’ new men’s basketball coach, the school announced Sunday.

His contract is for five seasons, sources told ESPN.

Wicks spent last season as the coach for Green Bay, where he led the Phoenix to an 18-14 record, 15 wins more than the previous season — one of the biggest turnarounds in college basketball. The native of Gillette, Wyoming, was a former assistant with the Cowboys from 2020 to 2023. He also was the coach at Missouri Western from 2018 to 2020.

“I am honored, humbled and immensely grateful for this opportunity at the University of Wyoming,” Wicks said. “… You cannot put into words what it means for a kid from the country roads outside of Gillette to represent the State of Wyoming and the Cowboys as their new head basketball coach.”

He replaces Jeff Linder, who has been in the process of finalizing a deal in recent days to become the top assistant coach at Texas Tech after going 63-59 over four seasons with Wyoming.

“Sundance will bring a great energy to our program and the entire State of Wyoming,” Wyoming athletic director Tom Burman said. “Being a native of this great state, Wicks knows the pride Cowboy fans take in the program and he will work tirelessly for his student-athletes and the community.”

Wyoming’s program has made 16 NCAA tournament appearances. Its most recent came under Linder in 2022, with Wicks as an assistant, when Wyoming lost in the First Four. Prior to that appearance, Wyoming last reached the NCAA tournament in 2015 under Larry Shyatt.

“If there is one thing, I learned growing up in Wyoming it’s that when you Honor the Brown and Gold, you are honoring so much more than just the University of Wyoming,” Wicks said. “You are honoring every single hard hat that woke up before the sun to work the coal mines. … Honoring the Brown and Gold is the understanding that a tip of the cap, a steering wheel wave, a hard handshake or a big hug is how you lift your people up in support of a hard day’s work.”

Wicks’ rรฉsumรฉ includes extensive Division I assistant coaching experience, with stops at San Francisco, Northern Illinois and Colorado.

He led Green Bay to instant success in his lone season there, as the Phoenix finished third in the Horizon League and he was named the conference’s coach…

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