Bzdelik in 2013
December 1, 1952 |
Mount Prospect, Illinois
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
Washington Bullets (asst.)
New York Knicks (scout)
Miami Heat (asst.)
Denver Nuggets (scout)
Jeff Bzdelik (born December 1, 1952) is an American basketball coach, with his most recent stint as the head men's coach at Wake Forest University until March 20, 2014. He formerly coached the Denver Nuggets in the National Basketball Association for slightly over two seasons, from 2002 until he was fired near the end of 2004.
Early career in college basketball
Bzdelik began his coaching career in 1978 as an assistant at Davidson College in North Carolina. He moved to Northwestern University in 1980, where he spent six seasons as an assistant, helping the Wildcats to their first NIT appearance in school history. He then took the head coaching position at the University of Maryland-Baltimore County for two years. During the 1986-87 season, his squad was cited by The Sporting News as "one of the biggest turnarounds in the school's inaugural season in Division 1."
Move to NBA as assistant
Washington Bullets coach Wes Unseld hired Bzdelik as an assistant in 1988. He stayed there until Unseld resigned in 1994. He then took a scouting position with Pat Riley on the New York Knicks before moving with Riley to the Miami Heat the next season as an assistant and advance scout. In 1997, Sports Illustrated named Bzdelik the NBA's best advance scout. In 2000, USA Today named him one of the NBA's top five assistants.
Bzdelik was hired in 2001 by the Denver Nuggets to be their East Coast scout. He was promoted to assistant coach in July 2002 and impressed team management by going 6-0 in the Rocky Mountain Revue summer league and motivating the team's young players. He was named the head coach of the Nuggets on August 21, 2002. The team struggled in his first year, winning just 17 games. They bounced back in his second season to finish with 43 wins and make the playoffs before losing in the first round. The team had high expectations in his third year after signing Kenyon Martin as a free agent. During his 17 years in the NBA, he coached 9 times in the playoffs.
Air Force Academy
On May 18, 2005, Bzedlik signed a multiyear contract to become the head coach at the US Air Force Academy. The team was filled with a veteran heavy roster and made a first round NCAA tournament appearance his first year after finishing with the best record (24-7) in the program's 50-year history. The next year, they surpassed the record from the previous year by winning 26 games and made it to the NIT semifinals.
Wake Forest University
||The neutrality of this section is disputed. (April 2014)|
Head coaching record
|Regular season||G||Games coached||W||Games won||L||Games lost||W–L %||Win-loss %|
|Post season||PG||Playoff games||PW||Playoff wins||PL||Playoff losses||PW–L %||Playoff win-loss %|
|DEN||2002–03||82||17||65||.207||7th in Midwest||—||—||—||—||Missed Playoffs|
|DEN||2003–04||82||43||39||.524||6th in Midwest||5||1||4||.200||Lost in First Round|
|UMBC Retrievers (NCAA Division I Independent) (1986–1988)|
|Air Force Falcons (Mountain West Conference) (2005–2007)|
|2005–06||Air Force||24–7||12–4||2nd||NCAA First Round|
|2006–07||Air Force||26–9||10–6||T–3rd||NIT Semifinal|
|Colorado Buffaloes (Big 12 Conference) (2007–2010)|
|Wake Forest Demon Deacons (Atlantic Coast Conference) (2010–present)|
- Nuggets have nothing to lose with Bzdelik By Marc J. Spears, ESPN
- Official Air Force basketball profile
- Official Wake Forest basketball profile
- BasketballReference.com: Jeff Bzdelik (as coach)