Butler Creighton Basketball

Creighton coach Greg McDermott calls instructions during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Butler in Omaha, Neb., Sunday, Feb. 23, 2020. The Cascade native was named the Big East Coach of the Year.

Greg McDermott, a 1982 graduate of Cascade high school, was named this year’s Big East Coach of the Year.

So far in his career as a coach, McDermott has earned a MVC and NSIC regular season championships, three MVC Tournament championships, a Big East regular season championship, and Big East Coach of the Year honors.

“This season was a special one for us as a team,” he commented. “There is a tremendous amount of pride for this squad and everything we’ve accomplished. With everything going on with the coronavirus, we never truly had the chance to celebrate it. But when everything settles down we will celebrate the right way because this team deserves it.”

After graduating from Cascade, McDermott decided to play basketball at the University of Northern Iowa from 1984-1988 and earned a bachelors degree in history. He commented, “I enjoyed competing at the D-1 level as well as being able to create bonds with teammates that are still strong today.”

When McDermott left UNI, his original plan was to teach and coach at the high school level, but was able to get into college coaching right away when he became an assistant basketball coach at the University of North Dakota in 1989. He coached there for five years and helped lead the team to five consecutive NCAA Division II tournaments.

In 1994, McDermott accepted his first head coaching job at Wayne State for men’s basketball, where he stayed for six years. While there, he would amass a record of 116-53.

After his time at WSU, McDermott head coached at North Dakota State in 2000 for just one season. He led the team to a 15-11 record and placed eighth overall in the North Central Conference.

A year later, in April 2001, McDermott returned to his alma mater, UNI, as head coach of their men’s basketball squad. He remained as head coach for the Panthers for five years and led them to a record of 90-63, a Missouri Valley Conference championship, and three total appearances in the NCAA Tournaments in 2004, 2005 and 2006.

McDermott moved on to Iowa State University. He was there for four seasons between 2007 and 2010, leading them to a 59-68 overall record.

In April 2010, McDermott accepted his most recent head coaching position at Creighton University. His contract with the team was reported to be a 10-year deal. Thus far at Creighton, McDermott has accumulated an overall record of 231-116, going 69-57 in the Big East Conference since 2013.

While at the school, McDermott has led his team to the NCAA Tournament six times and has seen his team top the Big East Conference twice (2012-2013, 2019-2020). In the most recent basketball season, McDermott was named the Big East Coach of the Year for helping lead Creighton to a first-place 24-7 record. In McDermott’s first four years at Creighton, he was able to coach his son Doug, who went on to be drafted 11th overall in the 2014 NBA draft.

“One of the greatest opportunities I’ve ever had as a head coach was being able to coach my son during his college basketball career,” McDermott commented. “Some of my fondest memories so far are being at Doug’s senior night where he scored his 3,000th point of his college career.”