Holtmann Steps Down To Accept Assistant Coaching Position At Butler University - GWUSports.com—Official Web Site of Gardner-Webb Athletics
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Holtmann led Gardner-Webb to 21 wins in his third season at the helm.
Courtesy: Gardner-Webb
Holtmann Steps Down To Accept Assistant Coaching Position At Butler University
Courtesy: Gardner-Webb
          Release: July 15, 2013
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BOILING SPRINGS, N.C. - Gardner-Webb University men's basketball coach Chris Holtmann stepped down Monday morning to accept an assistant coaching position at Butler University.

Holtmann, 41, was successful in a major rebuilding effort in his three seasons at the helm of Gardner-Webb, leading the Runnin' Bulldogs to a Division I era-record 21 wins and a berth in the CollegeInsiders.com Postseason Tournament (CIT) in 2012-2013. Holtmann's squad finished on a sizzling regular season streak that saw GWU win 10 of its final 11 games and finish just a game out of first place in the Big South Conference standings.

A search for Holtmann's replacement will take place immediately.

"We are grateful for the resurgence Chris created here at Gardner-Webb. He will be sorely missed, both on and off the court," said Vice President for Athletics Chuck Burch. "Although we are disappointed not to have him on the sidelines here in Boiling Springs, we will always be supportive of successful coaches' pursuit of opportunities to advance their career. 

"Chris is leaving an experienced, talented team for his successor, and we are confident the program is in much better shape than it was when he arrived in 2010."

Holtmann was named 2013 Big South Conference Coach of the Year and NABC District 3 Coach of the Year following his most recent season at the helm. He joined the Gardner-Webb program as its head coach after two seasons as an assistant coach under John Groce at Ohio University. Holtmann spent time before that as an assistant coach at Gardner-Webb (2003-2008), helping GWU to an Atlantic Sun Conference regular season crown and 18-12 finish in 2004-2005 and a 17-win season the following year.

"First of all, I would like to thank our president, Dr. Frank Bonner, and my athletics director, Chuck Burch, for the opportunity they gave me three years ago to rebuild this program," said Holtmann. "Chuck Burch is a major reason I came here and he has, quite simply, been an unbelievable person to work under. We are very close, and that is certainly one reason this is so emotional.

"My staff and players are the reason we had a record-setting year and went to the postseason for the first time. The future here is very bright and those guys are responsible for the great optimism around our program right now. The opportunity I am taking at Butler University, working for Brandon Miller, is a wonderful one that was just too strong to pass up for my family. Gardner-Webb University and this great community will always be special to the Holtmann family."

Butler will be in its first season as a member of the Big East in 2013-2014, under first-year head coach Brandon Miller – who stepped into that role after former boss Brad Stevens accepted the Boston Celtics' head coaching job earlier this month.

Gardner-Webb returns three starters - Donta Harper, Jerome Hill and Tyler Strange - and adds highly-touted transfer Naji Hibbert who sat out last season after joining the program from Texas A&M. GWU opens its 2013-2014 season on Friday, November 8, at Xavier in Cincinnati, Ohio.




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