UNC Coach Jeff Linder to Take Over Wyoming Cowboys Basketball

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

University of Wyoming Athletics Director Tom Burman announced Tuesday that Jeff Linder, most recently head coach at the University of Northern Colorado, will be the new head coach of the university’s basketball team. 

Linder, who replaces former Wyoming coach Allen Edwards, will be the 22nd head coach in the history of the school. 

Linder led the University of Northern Colorado to three back-to-back 20-win seasons. 

“Jeff turned around the basketball program at Northern Colorado and developed his team into one of the premier programs in the Big Sky Conference,” Burman said in a statement. “Jeff possesses many important qualities I was looking for in a new head coach. First and foremost, he is a proven winner. Jeff also has great knowledge of the region and the Mountain West Conference. His brand of basketball will be great for our Cowboy fans to watch.”

Linder posted an 80-50 record in four seasons at UNC. He was named the Big Sky Coach of the Year during the 2018-19 season, leading the Bears to 15 conference wins, a program record. The Bears tied that record again in the 2019-20 season. 

Over the last three years, Linder led UNC to the most wins during a three-year stretch in the program’s history, 69. 

“I’m extremely excited for the opportunity to be the men’s basketball coach at the University of Wyoming,” Linder said in a statement. “For me to now have the opportunity to lead this acclaimed program is an honor that I won’t take for granted. I will work to build on the storied past built and laid before me and diligently work to make Wyoming basketball a force to be reckoned with.”

Linder added that he and his staff will make recruiting in the region a priority while looking all over the globe for student athletes who fit the characters they want in Cowboy basketball players. 

Prior to his time at UNC, Linder spent six seasons at Boise State, with the last three years serving as associate head coach of the Boise Broncos. He helped take Boise State to two NCAA tournament appearances and the team’s first Mountain West Conference Championship. 

In his first year at Boise, Linder helped head coach Leon Rice steer the Broncos to one of its most successful seasons in school history.

Linder is a Lafayette, Colorado, native. He played basketball for one season at Mesa State College in Grand Junction, Colorado. After his freshman year, he transferred to Western State Colorado University in Gunnison and played three seasons under Bob Hofman. 

He and his wife Kelli have four children: daughters Adison and Makalyn and sons Jordan and Devon. 

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