DePaul hires Chris Holtmann: Blue Demons tap ex-Ohio State coach to turn around floundering program



Former Ohio State coach Chris Holtmann has been named the next men’s head basketball coach at DePaul, the school announced on Tuesday. The deal for Holtmann to lead the Blue Demons program runs for six years, sources told CBS Sports. 

Holtmann was fired from Ohio State in February after nearly seven seasons leading the Buckeyes. His career record is 251-171 across stints with Ohio State, Butler and Gardner-Webb. He guided the Buckeyes to the NCAA Tournament four times, while during his previous stop at Butler, he made three NCAA Tournament appearances with the Bulldogs. DePaul, meanwhile, has missed every NCAA Tournament since 2004. It’s the longest active tournament drought of any team in a power conference.

“I am very excited about this opportunity to be the head men’s basketball coach at DePaul,” Holtmann said in a release. “During this process, I was extremely impressed with the commitment, eagerness and vision of DeWayne Peevy and President Manuel to build a successful BIG EAST basketball program. My wife, Lori, and our daughter, Nora, look forward to getting to Chicago and spending time in the DePaul community. We can’t wait to get to work!”

To bring a big-name candidate like Holtmann aboard, DePaul committed to more than $3 million in its coaching pool, sources told CBS Sports, in addition to a significant NIL fund that is expected to be north of $2 million.

DePaul is coming off what is statistically the worst season of the past 25 years for a power-conference program. The Blue Demons went 3-29 and sit 308th at KenPom.com — the lowest ranking in that metric’s history for any school in a high-major conference.

Holtmann, meanwhile, was previously a success story in the Big East at Butler after he inherited that job in 2014. Holtmann won 70 games in three seasons at Butler from 2014-15 to 2016-17.

“After an extensive national search, I am proud to welcome Chris Holtmann to Chicago and our Blue Demon family,” said DePaul athletic director DeWayne Peevy. “Chris’ track record as a head coach of high-level programs, demonstrated commitment to excellence on and off the court, and NCAA postseason experience made him the perfect hire for DePaul. Chris unmistakably shares our values and our vision for DePaul men’s basketball, recognizes our commitment to the resources required to compete at a high level, and is eager to return our program to national prominence.”





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