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College Basketball: Otzelberger names Blount an Assistant Coach


This news story was published on March 31, 2021.
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JR Blount

AMES – JR Blount, widely recognized as one of the top assistant coaches in the Mountain West Conference, has been named an assistant coach by Iowa State head men’s basketball coach T.J. Otzelberger.

Blount brings 12 years of coaching experience to Iowa State. Last summer, Stadium named Blount one of the top-five assistant coaches in the MWC thanks to his success at Colorado State.

“JR is one of the bright young minds in all of college basketball,” Otzelberger said. “A very gifted coach in guard development, he also impacts young men in a positive way off the court. JR is well respected across the country as a recruiter, building genuine and long-lasting relationships. He has had success at each of his stops and I know he’ll be a valuable member of our program.”

“I’m so excited to join T.J. and the entire staff,” Blount said. “T.J. has been a mentor of mine since I was in high school in Milwaukee. My family and I are grateful for this amazing opportunity to join Cyclone Nation and bring the magic back to Hilton Coliseum and this prestigious program.

“We are excited to be back in the Midwest and come back home to an opportunity that was too good to overlook. With the guidance of T.J. and the rest of the staff I look forward to getting back to the winning ways at ISU and promoting the development of great young men both on and off the court.”

Blount has steadily risen through the college coaching ranks since starting his career as graduate assistant coach at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in 2009, where the team won the 2010 Division III national championship.

After spending three seasons at Saint Leo University as an assistant and associate head coach, Blount moved to Des Moines and served as director of basketball operations and assistant coach for four seasons at Drake.

Most recently, Blount spent the last three seasons at Colorado State as an assistant coach. In his time in Fort Collins, the Rams signed the highest-rated class in school history.

Blount worked closely and was instrumental in the development of two-time All-Mountain West player Nico Carvacho. In 2020-21, three Rams earned All-MWC honors as CSU ranked among the top-three in the league in scoring and scoring defense.

The Rams made marked improvements as a team as well, improving by eight wins after his first season at the school and winning 20 games before the season was ended due to COVID-19. This season, Colorado State went 20-8 and advanced to the semifinals of the National Invitational Tournament.

Blount was an integral leader of the TOGETHER INITIATIVE at Colorado State that promoted social justice and racial equality on campus.

Blount played collegiately at Loyola Chicago from 2005-09 where he was three-year team captain and was twice named the team’s most valuable player. He was twice honored as the school’s athlete of the year as well.

After his college playing career was over, Blount played professionally for the Leicester Riders of the British Basketball League during the 2010-11 season.

He earned degrees in psychology and sociology from Loyola in 2009 and later received his master’s degree in education from UW-Stevens Point in 2012.

A native of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Blount was a standout high school player at Dominican High School, earning all-state honors in 2004 and 2005. He was named Wisconsin Sports Player of the Year in 2005.

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