Bruce Weber (basketball)
||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (June 2010)|
Weber at Welsh-Ryan Arena in Evanston on January 23, 2010
October 19, 1956 |
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|Western Kentucky (assistant)
|Head coaching record|
|Tournaments||11–9 (NCAA Tournament)|
|Accomplishments and honors|
Big 12 Regular Season Championship (2013)
Big Ten Regular Season Championship (2004, 2005)
Big Ten Tournament Championship (2005)
MVC Regular Season Championship (2002, 2003)
Naismith College Coach of the Year (2005)
Associated Press National Coach of the Year (2005)
Big 12 Coach of the Year (2013)
Big Ten Coach of the Year (2005)
MVC Coach of the Year (2003)
Bruce Brett Weber (born October 19, 1956) is an American college basketball coach, and the current head coach for the Kansas State University men's basketball team. Weber was formerly head coach at Southern Illinois University and the University of Illinois.
Weber has won conference championships and conference coach of the year awards at each of the three schools where he has served as head coach. He has guided his teams to a combined total of nine NCAA Tournaments, including an appearance with Illinois in the championship game of the 2005 NCAA Tournament. Weber was the consensus national coach of the year in 2005.
Weber began his coaching career with a brief stint as an assistant coach at Western Kentucky University during the 1979–80 season under head coach Gene Keady. In 1980 Weber moved to Purdue University along with Keady. He remained an assistant coach at Purdue for 18 seasons before becoming the head coach at Southern Illinois University in 1998. In his five seasons at Southern Illinois Weber led the Salukis to consecutive Missouri Valley Conference championships and NCAA tournament appearances, including an NCAA Sweet Sixteen finish in 2002.
University of Illinois
On April 30, 2003, Illinois Athletic Director Ron Guenther selected Bruce Weber to fill the men's basketball head coach position at the University of Illinois.
The Illini played a tough early season game against North Carolina on December 2 in Greensboro, and were tied at 69 with just six minutes to go. Illinois eventually lost the game 88–81, but it proved to be a good test for the young team with no seniors in the starting lineup. Weber faced his toughest test after starting the conference schedule with an even 3–3 mark. He changed many doubters' minds by winning the remaining ten games on the conference schedule, winning the Big Ten title outright for the first time since 1952. In post-season play, the Illini finished second, losing to Wisconsin in the championship game. They received a bid for a fifth seed in the 2004 NCAA Tournament, defeating Murray State and Cincinnati in the first two rounds. A 72–62 loss to top-seeded Duke ended their tournament run, but capped a solid first season for coach Weber.
The 2005 season opened with high expectations and the return of all the team's starters. On December 1 the Illini defeated the number-one ranked team, Wake Forest University, 91–73, at Assembly Hall. Weber sported a glowing orange blazer for the game, and Assembly Hall was painted orange by the 16,618 fans wearing school colors. The pressure grew for Weber as the victory vaulted the Illini to the top spot in the polls the following week, a spot they would carry for the rest of the season. Regular season perfection ended on the last game of the regular season, however, as Illinois lost a 12-point, second-half lead to Ohio State and lost to the Thad Matta-coached Buckeyes, 65–64. In the post-season tournaments they quickly regained form, however, by winning the Big Ten Tournament in Chicago.
In the 2005 NCAA Tournament the team received the overall top seed, and top seed in the Midwestern Regional. Illinois defeated Farleigh Dickinson and Nevada in the first two rounds in Indianapolis. In the Sweet Sixteen Weber led the Illini to a victory over his alma-mater Milwaukee, then defeated the Arizona to advance to the Final Four. After leading Illinois to a win over Louisville in the Final Four, Weber could not deliver the Fighting Illini their first national championship, falling 75–70 to North Carolina in the national championship game.
Weber coached the team to the best record in school history, finishing 37–2, and tying the NCAA record for most wins in a season. Weber won many coaching awards after the season, including the Naismith Award and the Henry Iba Award.
Despite losing three starters to the NBA, the Illini finished the 2005–06 season with a 26–7 record and reached the second round of the 2006 NCAA Tournament. The 2006–07 season had a disappointing start, including the first 3-game losing streak in Weber's tenure. However, the Illini rebounded to finish 23–11 and again qualify for the NCAA tournament. The 2006–2007 season did, however, bring some disappointment off of the court, as guard Jamar Smith was the driver in an accident that left center Brian Carlwell injured.  Smith eventually pled guilty to aggravated DUI and received a 15-day jail sentence.  The 2007–2008 season marked the first time during Weber's tenure that the Illini did not qualify for a postseason tournament, finishing the season with an overall record of 16–19, 5–13 in the Big Ten Conference.  The team improved markedly the following year, however, finishing 24–10 (11–7 in the Big Ten) and returning to NCAA Tournament.
After a 10–0 start to the 2011–12 season, Weber's Illini went 7–15, finishing the season with a 17–15 record. On March 9, 2012, one day after the Illini lost its Big Ten Conference Tournament opening-round game to Iowa, Weber was relieved of his duties.
During his nine-year tenure as Illinois coach, Weber amassed a Big Ten Conference record of 89–64, and an overall record of 210–101. However, it became clearly evident that Weber's success at Illinois was largely creditable to Bill Self's recruits. Once Self's recruits left the program, Weber had a losing record in the Big 10.
Kansas State University
On March 31, 2012, Weber was hired as head coach at Kansas State University, a school that had been to four NCAA tournaments in the prior five seasons. In his first season at K-State, Weber led the Wildcats to 27–8 record and tied for the Big 12 Conference title with a 14–4 conference mark. The title was K-State's first regular-season conference championship since 1977. Weber was named the 2012–2013 Big 12 Conference Men's Basketball Coach of the Year. His first season at KSU ended with an upset loss in the second round of the 2013 NCAA Tournament to the La Salle University Explorers, 63-61, in Kansas City's Sprint Center.
Shortly after the end of Weber's first season, starting point guard Angel Rodriquez and reserve forward Adrian Diaz announced their intentions to transfer. Also, freshman guard Michael Orris, a member of Weber's original recruiting class, left the team to join Northern Illinois. Kansas State's roster was further thinned when incoming freshman Neville Fincher was declared ineligible for the 2013–2014 season, and incoming point guard Jevon Thomas was declared ineligible for the fall semester.
Weber's Wildcats dropped their season opener at home to the Big Sky Conference's Northern Colorado Bears, who had finished the previous season with a losing record (13–18) and four road wins.
Professional players coached
|Player||Draft||Current/Last Pro Team|
|James Augustine||41st, Orlando Magic, 2006 NBA Draft||BC Khimki|
|Dee Brown||46th, Utah Jazz, 2006 NBA Draft||Maccabi Tel Aviv B.C.|
|Luther Head||24th, Houston Rockets, 2005 NBA Draft||Texas Legends|
|Meyers Leonard||11th, Portland Trailblazers, 2012 NBA Draft||Trailblazers|
|Demetri McCamey||Undrafted, 2011||Cairns Taipans|
|Brandon Paul||Undrafted, 2013||Nizhny Novgorod|
|Roger Powell||Undrafted, 2005||Skyliners Frankfurt|
|Deron Williams||3rd, Utah Jazz, 2005 NBA Draft||Nets|
Head coaching record
|Southern Illinois Salukis (Missouri Valley Conference) (1998–2003)|
|1999–00||Southern Illinois||20–13||12–6||3rd||NIT Second Round|
|2001–02||Southern Illinois||28–8||14–4||T–1st||NCAA Sweet Sixteen|
|2002–03||Southern Illinois||24–7||16–2||1st||NCAA First Round|
|Southern Illinois:||103–54 (.656)||62–28 (.689)|
|Illinois Fighting Illini (Big Ten Conference) (2003–2012)|
|2003–04||Illinois||26–7||13–3||1st||NCAA Sweet Sixteen|
|2005–06||Illinois||26–7||11–5||T–2nd||NCAA Second Round|
|2006–07||Illinois||23–12||9–7||T–4th||NCAA First Round|
|2008–09||Illinois||24–10||11–7||T–2nd||NCAA First Round|
|2010–11||Illinois||20–14||9–9||T–4th||NCAA Third Round|
|Illinois:||210–101 (.675)||89–65 (.578)|
|Kansas State Wildcats (Big 12 Conference) (2012–present)|
|2012–13||Kansas State||27–8||14–4||T–1st||NCAA Second Round|
|Kansas State:||33–11 (.750)||14–4 (.778)|
National champion Conference regular season champion Conference tournament champion
Weber was born in Milwaukee to Louis and Dawn Weber, growing up with two sisters and two brothers. Weber graduated from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee in 1978 with a bachelor's degree in education. Weber added a master's degree in education administration and physical education from Western Kentucky University in 1981. He is married to Megan Weber, and has three daughters – Hannah, Christy and Emily.
- "KSU Weber biography". Retrieved 2013-03-18.
- "Illinois Weber biography". Retrieved 2013-03-18.
- The Kansas City Star, March 22, 2013; http://www.kansascity.com/2013/03/22/4137445/k-state-trails-la-salle-44-26.html
- Wichita Eagle, April 8, 2013; www.kansas.com/2013/04/08/2752700/adrian-diaz-leaves-kansas-state.html
- Sports Illustrated, April 22, 2013; sportsillustrated.cnn.com/college-basketball/.../pg-angel-rodriguez...
- Topeka Capital-Journal, April 1, 2013; http://cjonline.com/sports/2013-04-01/orris-leaving-k-state-basketball-team
- Topeka Capital-Journal, June 6, 2013; http://cjonline.com/sports/2013-06-06/k-state-recruit-fincher-fails-qualify
- The Wichita Eagle, February 27, 2013; http://www.kansas.com/2013/02/27/2694391/new-york-point-guard-jevon-thomas.html