NORMAL — Dan Muller will be introduced as Illinois State’s 19th men’s head basketball coach at 4 p.m. Tuesday at Redbird Arena, the school announced in a news release Monday night.

The Pantagraph reported Sunday night that ISU assistant coach Rob Judson was going to be named head coach sometime this week based on information that proved to be erroneous.

Muller, 36, was the favored choice of many ISU fans and boosters who remember him as being one of the leaders of the last Redbird teams to make the NCAA Tournament, in 1997 and 1998.

The Redbirds were 91-37 during Muller’s time as a player and won back-to-back Missouri Valley Conference regular season and tournament titles.

He was a two-time MVC Defensive Player of the Year, an all-MVC second-team pick in 1998 and a second-team Academic All-American. Muller ranks No. 10 on ISU’s all-time scoring list with 1,445 points.

For the last 12 years, Muller has served on the Vanderbilt staff of Kevin Stallings, his coach at ISU.

Muller has been an assistant coach with the Commodores the last 10 years and was an administrative assistant for two years prior to that. Muller has served as Vanderbilt’s recruiting coordinator since 2006.

The Commodores could have three No. 1 picks in this year’s NBA Draft.

Coincidentally, Muller was promoted to assistant coach in 2002 to replace Tim Jankovich who left to join Bill Self at Illinois.

Jankovich was ISU’s head coach the past five years, compiling a 104-64 record. He resigned on April 26 to become the associate coach/coach-in-waiting for Larry Brown at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

It is not known if Muller will retain either of the other two ISU assistants, Anthony Beane or Paris Parham. ISU officials said after Jankovich resigned that Judson would be part of the next coaching staff if he wasn’t named head coach.

Judson later said he would assess what his role would be and other coaching options before deciding whether to stay at ISU.

Muller interviewed Thursday with ISU athletic director Gary Friedman. That same day Friedman interviewed Gonzaga assistant Ray Giacoletti, a Redbird assistant from 1990-93 under Bob Bender. Judson was interviewed the next day.

Friedman said he would not comment on the coaching search until the news conference to announce Jankovich’s replacement.

The Redbirds finished this past season with a 21-14 record and are expected to return all their key players for the 2012-13 season when they could contend for the MVC title and their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1998.

More from pantagraph.com

(27) comments

maverick37
maverick37

Wow! Somebody dropped the ball.

Hero of the Chappaquiddick
Hero of the Chappaquiddick

LOL...that was AWK-WARD!

Market Street Lover
Market Street Lover

Good Luck Dan and Redbirds. It is time to return to the big dance!

Sretooh5
Sretooh5

Muller is a much better choice than Judson. I almost saw the second coming of a SIU disaster. At least this will give us a chance with a young coach that should stay here for awhile. It's going to be all about recruiting and team discipline. Good Luck Coach Muller I feel you have most Redbird fans behind you!

DaCards88
DaCards88

The Birds' are back. Lets give Judson a pay raise and get this thing going. Thank you Friedman. Let's fill up Redbird Arena next year and the years to come!

billybear
billybear

This is a great hire! Muller did a fantastic job with recruiting since he was in charge of that position dating back to 2006 at Vandy and overall has a solid feel for the game. I wish him lots of luck and hope he brings back the NCAA magic to Bloomington-Normal!!!

Titan8485
Titan8485

Judson would have provided the stability ISU could use. Now you have a young coach who will fail like Porter or move on like Jankovich and Stallings.

Lil Red
Lil Red

Was this a fiasco or what? I hope Judson and the two other assistants get to stay.

RDL1044
RDL1044

74-101 at Northern. 'Nuff said.

my2centz
my2centz

You mean 102-74 at Creighton? The same team they lost by 4 points to in OT in the MVC Tourney, a team that was ranked nationally and won an NCCA tournmanet game. With a freshman and a juco transfer as two of the Birds three best players? Nuff said? Really?

The Truth as I see it
The Truth as I see it

Are you sure this time? Muelller will do fine. Judson should sue this paper. How embarrassing

JC33
JC33

Great hire for the Redbirds. Pantagraph may have a little egg on their face but also know in today's world of get the scoop first mentality sure they thought they had good information. Pretty certain that informant will be scratched off the list for later use. In the end the Redbirds got it right and I bet you see season ticket sales immediately increase at 4 PM today. Birds dancing in 2013!

pio1980
pio1980

To have a front page headline with bad information Inexcusable and embarrassing. The writer of the article should be let go. It is the writer's responsiblity! The Pantagraph should apologize to the university, Judson & the readers.
I'm very glad to see Dan Muller get the job. Congratulations to Gary Friedman.

Chip Bird
Chip Bird

FWIW, Bring back Bob Donewald!

Johnny Redbird
Johnny Redbird

I will now happily send in my greatly increased annual donation (plus the company match), renew my season tickets and attend The Valley tourney again. This wasn't going to happen if Muller was snubbed. Great selection AD Friedman! I thought for sure the old baggage still employed in the Athletics Department would talk you out of it. We finally will have some life to what has turned into a mediocre program and game day experience. It will be nice to see Hank up and cheering again!

miniman
miniman

Quick, hurry on down to West Washington. A giant omelette is being served.

earthling
earthling

Good going Friedman and ISU!

grateful jed
grateful jed

"The Birds are back", says DaCards. The birds have already been back. It's too bad you couldn't have been having fun with the rest of us who didn't allow personal feelings to get in the way of a really good thing.

grateful jed
grateful jed

Muller is a great hire IMO. But none of us should carry any illusions into this sign either. Muller will leave as well when the time is right for him and his family. Cheers to AD Friedman for a great hire. Cheers to fellow redbird fans-this is gonna be a good ride.

miniman
miniman

Of course he will. And we should be hoping this happens because just like in Jank's case, it will mean he has been successful here. Unlike Jank however; Muller should create an excitment in the community because of his ties to a very positive time in Redbird basketball history. I think I share the excitment of many here who are looking forward to hearing Muller's name announced at the first game next fall. It's Muller time, and I'm going home this evening to pop open an Ommegang Abbey Ale to celebrate!

MikeAIMD
MikeAIMD

BEANE SHOULD BE PROMOTED TO ASSOCIATE COACH.

JSBC6
JSBC6

Hope people don't throw this guy under the bus in a couple years if he is successful and leaves. People need to realize that ISU is not a premier basketball program and will always be a stepping stone to major D1 basketball

RedbirdFanToo
RedbirdFanToo

This is a GREAT decision! I can't wait for next season to begin. Kudos to the AD.

Chadwick Snow
Chadwick Snow

Verify, verify, verify before going to press. The risk is too great to roll the dice. Having said that, Muller is the right choice with a great recruiting track record and a foundation in a successful D1 program.

DbblDplr
DbblDplr

Congratulations to Coach Muller on his selection as head coach. I agree with the comments regarding the need for verification of information before going to press. That being said I`m anxiously awaiting the paper`s coverage of the November Presidential election to see if my candidate defeats Harry Truman.

lneck72
lneck72

For all those who are questioning The Pantagraph and Mr. Benson, don't shoot the messenger. Unless you know the whole story, how can you judge?

UHighFan
UHighFan

A great hire for Illinois State University.

Coach Muller will succeed with the support of the fans, students and Athletic Department.

Time for Coach Muller really evaluate the existing staff though.

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