Don Verlin Announced As Next Vandal Men's Basketball Coach
MOSCOW, Idaho - Don Verlin has joined the University of Idaho family as head coach of the Vandal men's basketball program. Verlin, who was the longest tenured assistant coach in Utah State history, brings his offensive expertise from the fifth-winningest Division I basketball program of the decade.
"Don is a winner. He has been involved with winning programs his entire career," Spear said. "He has been mentored by one of the most respected coaches in the game - Stew Morrill.
"Don is a program-builder, a great evaluator of talent, and he understands what it takes to be successful in the Western Athletic Conference."
Verlin has been with Morrill for 15 years, which includes their time together at Colorado State University before Morrill was hired at Utah State 11 seasons ago. The offensive guru for the Aggies, Verlin has been a key component in Utah State's nine successive post-season appearances and nine-successive 20-plus-win seasons. In his 16 years at the NCAA level, Verlin's teams have won 73 percent of their games and over the past 20 years his teams have 467 victories. The teams with which he has been involved never have had a record below .500.
"I'm extremely honored to be chosen the head basketball coach at the University of Idaho," Verlin said. "I am tremendously excited and am looking forward to building a winning basketball program here."
Verlin said the schools share not only a conference affiliation that will be beneficial in his transition but a college-town atmosphere that is a draw to his recruiting style and his family.
"One of the things that really impressed me was the passion Rob Spear and (Idaho president) Tim White have for the University of Idaho," Verlin said.
Verlin, who was in charge of USU's complex offensive schemes, helped turn the Aggies into one of the best shooting teams in the country as they currently are in a position to finish first in the nation for field goal shooting, as they did in 2005. The team has ranked among the top three shooting teams nationally in four of the last five years.
"Don has been with me 15 years and it's always tough to see someone go when they've been with you that long," Morrill said in a statement released by the school. "I am very happy for him and his family. He will be a terrific head coach and we will miss having him as part of our program. Even though we will be competing in the same league, Don will always be family and that will never change."
Prior to Utah State, Verlin spent two tenures at Colorado State, as he was an assistant at CSU during the 1992 season before moving to Cal State Bakersfield for the 1993 and 1994 seasons. During his two seasons as an assistant in California, Cal State Bakersfield won back-to-back NCAA Division II national championships.
Verlin returned to Colorado State ahead of the 1995 season and then spent the next five seasons in Fort Collins. Prior to his first stint at Colorado State, Verlin was an assistant at Columbia (Calif.) Junior College from 1989-91. Columbia posted an 81-23 record in his three years there and won two conference championships.
Verlin, 42, graduated from Cal State Stanislaus with a degree in physical education in 1991. He earned a master's degree in education from Colorado State in 1993.
Born June 15, 1965 at Roseville, Calif., Verlin graduated from Del Oro High School at Loomis, Calif. He and his wife, the former Serena Shumway, have one son (Jacob, 12) and one daughter (Sydnee, 5). He also has a twin brother (Ron) who is an assistant basketball coach at Pacific.