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Utah State University names Craig Smith as head basketball coach

Craig Smith was named by Utah State University Vice President and Director of Athletics John Hartwell as the school’s 19th head coach in 113 seasons of Aggie basketball. (Photo: Utah State University)

(KUTV) -- Craig Smith was named by Utah State University Vice President and Director of Athletics John Hartwell as the school’s 19th head coach in 113 seasons of Aggie basketball.

"Our family and I are pumped to join Utah State University and the community of Logan," said Smith in a press release. "Utah State men's basketball has tremendous leadership from the top in President (Noelle) Cockett, athletic director John Hartwell, and all the way down. It was easy to see and feel that our visions were aligned when it comes to running a successful basketball program.

Smith has coaching experience in the Mountain West from spending five years as an assistant at Colorado State from 2008 to 2012. He additionally has 22 years of collegiate coaching experience, including seven years as a head coach, and has been to postseason play 10 times during his career, while winning three regular seasons and two postseason conference championships.

As a head coach, Smith has been named conference Coach of the Year three times, in addition to receiving the NAIA II National Coach of the Year Award in 2007 and the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) District 12 Coach of the Year Award in 2017, according to the news release.

"When we started this process two weeks ago we identified several characteristics we wanted in our next head coach – high energy, high character, a proven recruiter and proven player development, to name a few," said Hartwell in a public announcement. "We believe we have not only checked all the boxes, but that we have hit a home run with the hiring of Craig Smith. Craig has been a winner at every level. Craig, his wife Darcy, and their family, will be tremendous assets to Utah State University and Cache Valley. We look forward to Craig leading our team to the high levels of success that Aggie basketball has experienced in our storied history."

Smith comes to the home of the Aggies after spending the past four years as the head coach at the University of South Dakota, where he led the Coyotes to a 79-55 (.590) record, including a 38-26 (.594) mark in the Summit League. In his last two seasons at USD, he led the program to back-to-back postseason appearances (NIT, CBI) and a conference championship (2017), as the Coyotes produced a 48-21 (.696) record, including a 23-7 (.767) mark in league play.

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