Chris Holtmann Named New Head Coach Of Ohio State

Chris Holtmann; Credit Getty Images

By Ryan Touhey,

Former Butler head coach Chris Holtmann will be transferring from the Big East Conference to the Big Ten Conference. He has been named the new head coach of Ohio State University. The announcement was made official on Friday, June 9.

According to the NCAA website, Holtmann had been the head coach for the Bulldogs for the past three seasons. The deal he has signed on with Ohio State is reportedly worth eight years and $3 million per year. The other aspects of the deal have yet to be released and finalized to the public.

Ohio State senior VP (vice president) and athletic director Gene Smith, told the NCAA website that Holtmann fit perfectly within the lines of what Ohio State was looking for in a new head coach. “Chris is focused on academics, is a high-integrity person, a relentless recruiter with Midwestern ties and a proven winner,” said Smith.

Holtmann will be succeeding Thad Matta as the head coach of the Buckeyes. Matta had been at the helm at Ohio State since 2004 and was fired at the end of this past season for reasons such as health concerns and performance issues. Coincidentally, Matta had also been the head coach at Butler. He was an assistant coach there from 1997-2000 and was the head coach there from 2000-2001.

According to Sports Illustrated, Holtmann had a record of 70-31 during his tenure as the Bulldogs’ head coach. He guided them to the NCAA Tournament every year he was at the helm in addition to his regular season success. Holtmann had previously served as an assistant coach at Geneva College in Pennsylvania and at Taylor University in Upland, Indiana. He had also played college basketball at Taylor as a guard.

After his assistant coach tenure at Taylor ended following the 2002-03 season, he went on to assist at Gardner-Webb and Ohio, before eventually being hired as the head coach of Gardner-Webb in 2010.

Barry Collier, the vice president and director of athletics at Butler released a statement to “Chris is a tremendous basketball coach, but more importantly, he is a great man who has led our program well and embodied The Butler Way during his time with us. On behalf of everyone at Butler, we wish him, Lori (his wife), and Nora (his daughter) continued success as they make this transition,” said Collier.

Ohio State hopes to put together solid seasons with Holtmann. They finished 17-15 last season (7-11) in the Big Ten, and were quickly eliminated in the Big Ten Tournament in the first round by Rutgers.



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