Nick Nurse hired as associate head coach

By Chris Williams, Publisher

Iowa State has a new associate head basketball coach.

Nick Nurse…Welcome to Ames.

The official release was finally put out by Iowa State earlier this afternoon announcing that Nurse, the former head coach of the Iowa Energy would be joining Greg McDermott’s new look staff.

“It is a really good opportunity for me,” Nurse said on this afternoon’s installment of 1460 KXNO’s Murph and Andy Show. “I said that I would only consider it if it would professionally make me better and improve as a coach.”

McDermott and Nurse have quite the history. The two men have known each other for more than 25 years as they were college teammates at Northern Iowa back in the day.

“I’ve known and respected Greg since our playing days in college and am extremely excited to renew that friendship and get to work on developing a championship team at Iowa State,” Nurse said. “This is the perfect opportunity to broaden my experience in the college game. I loved my time in professional basketball, especially with the Energy, and will be forever grateful for the opportunity that Jerry Crawford provided me in Des Moines. I’m extremely proud of the job we did in getting that franchise to the playoffs within two years and setting a league record for victories and advancing to the NBADL semi-finals this year.”

Back to that KXNO interview for a minute. KXNO’s Andy Fales did ask Nurse an interesting question. Fales asked if Nurse was at all concerned about how long Greg McDermott would be employed in Ames.

Nurse’s answer?

“I am going to finish those thoughts today. I come up here with the expectation of helping him win,” Nurse said. “If I do that, there is no reason to ever think that again after today.”

Chris’ Take

I’ve thought all along that this would be a great hire, basically for one reason too. What is the biggest criticism of Greg McDermott that you’ve heard?

Come on. This is simple. It’s posted all of the time on our MBB forum. You know the posts that I am talking about. The ones about player relations.

Just look at the transfers over the years. Look at the type of players who have transferred over the years.

Wes Johnson, Lucca Staiger, Chris Colvin are just a few.

I’ve never met Nick Nurse. I look forward to doing this soon. But based off of what I have heard, he sounds like the type of coach who can relate to that type of guy. Just look at his resume.

Do you think that there’s been a lot of turnover in Ames? In college basketball terms, yes, a ton. But when comparing poodles to pit bulls, ponder what Nurse had to deal with as far as turnover goes with the Iowa Energy?

“There is no more quick changing culture anywhere than there is in the D-League,” Nurse said. “You go coach with the team with you have. You have to get those guys ready to go.”

That’s all you can do coach.

Just a couple more thoughts.

1) I do not believe that Nurse will be the next head coach at Iowa State.

2) Be excited today but keep in mind that this is not an immediate fix. I believe that it’s a step in the right direction, but expecting one assistant coach to change the fate of next season is a stretch. Sure, we can all be positive about this but try to keep things in perspective.