New Orleans hires Joey Stiebing as men’s basketball coach
NEW ORLEANS (AP) _ The University of New Orleans has had 12 straight winning seasons, five straight seasons with 20 or more victories and six new coaches in 10 years.
The latest addition to that list is Joey Stiebing, a former UNO assistant.
``I hope I don’t have to go through this again,″ UNO athletic director Ron Maestri said Tuesday. ``But I think I’ve learned from doing it so often, and I think I know what to look for by now.″
Following the departures of Benny Dees (Wyoming), Art Tolis (resigned) and Tim Floyd (Iowa State) and the death of Tommy Joe Eagles during the past decade, UNO coach Tic Price left this spring to become the coach at the University of Memphis.
Stiebing, 35, served as an assistant for seven years under Price and Floyd.
``I learned from a couple of people who ran very disciplined, very defensive-oriented programs,″ Stiebing said. ``If we can continue to keep the things that we’ve been doing, we should be successful.″
UNO, 22-7 last season, has won all or part of the Sun Belt Conference title seven times in the last 10 years. Only Murray State, with nine Ohio Valley titles, has won more Division I games during that time.
With its NIT bid this year, UNO qualified for a national postseason tournament for the ninth time in 11 years. The Privateers have played in five NIT tournaments and four NCAAs during that stretch.
``UNO has developed a reputation,″ Stiebing said. ``A lot of people have heard of it and a lot of kids are interested in playing here.″
Stiebing has a five-year contract for about $150,000, which Maestri said has a buy-out clause in it.
UNO had no buy-out clause in Floyd’s contract when he left for Iowa State. It did have such a clause for Price, however, and the approximate $360,000 the school received is being used to upgrade the schedule, Maestri said.
UNO will play Iowa State, Villanova, Nebraska, Tulane and Old Dominion this year.
``Coach Maestri told me who was on the schedule and asked if I still wanted the job,″ Stiebing joked.
Stiebing left UNO to go to Memphis with Price, but the longtime New Orleans resident said he was not happy with the move.
``I appreciate Tic Price giving me the opportunity to go to Memphis, but my heart was still here in New Orleans,″ Stiebing said. ``This is a dream come true for me. I’m in heaven.″
Stiebing was one of four to interview for the job. Also interviewed were Louisiana Tech coach Jim Woodridge, Iowa State assistant Stan Weaver and Kansas assistant Neil Dougherty.
UNO had three seniors on its 12-man roster in 1996-97. Eight lettermen and one redshirt are eligible to return, including starters Eddie Washington at center, Corey Brown at guard and DeWaune Wesley.