MASON CITY – There will be a couple of changes on the benches for the NIACC men’s and women’s basketball programs next season.
Veteran NIACC men’s basketball coach Mark Mohl will be the associate head coach for the NIACC men’s team starting in the 2022-23 season and will be an assistant coach for the NIACC women’s team under third-year coach Brad Vaught.
“I’ve been doing this a lot of years between varsity baseball, varsity basketball, college basketball and junior varsity games I’ve coached in well over 1,500 games,” Mohl said. “It’s kind of time to wind things down and I’ve always enjoyed being an assistant coach whether it be basketball or baseball. I’m excited about that. I have a couple of knee issues that I need to take care of. It’s time to transition into being more of a mentor and help out in that regard.”
Current NIACC men’s basketball assistant coach Jeremy Winters will be the interim head men’s basketball coach starting in the 2022-23 season.
Winters was an assistant coach under Mohl for the past 11 seasons.
“I don’t think he’s going to change a whole lot from what he’s said,” Mohl said of Winters. “I think he’s going to want to go up and down the floor and press like we’ve always done.
“I know his goal is to be a head coach. We have our recruiting pretty much done so he doesn’t need to worry about going out and finding a bunch of players.”
Mohl accumulated a record of 237-185 in 14 seasons as NIACC’s head men’s basketball coach, which ranks second for most wins in school history. Herb Konigsmark (1966-1993) ranks first with a career record of 447-286.
The Trojans were 20-12 in the 2021-22 season and advanced to the semifinals at the NJCAA Region XI tournament.
Mohl guided the Trojans to the NJCAA Region XI title game in the 2018-19 and 2019-20 seasons. Mohl was selected as the NJCAA Region XI men’s basketball coach of the year in the 2018-19 season.
“We’re in a good position to hand this thing off to him and hopefully he takes it and gets us to the national tournament, which obviously we didn’t do” Mohl said. “We thought we had a couple of good chances, which is pretty tough to do in our league.
“I think (Winters) will do great and I’m excited to see where he takes the program.”
Winters said he’s eager to get started.
“First of all, I’d like to thank the administration, coach Mohl, (athletic director) Cam Olson and (NIACC president) Dr. (Steve) Schulz for giving me the opportunity to put me in place as an interim coach,” Winters said. “The last 11 years with coach Mohl has really opened my eyes. I’ve always had a dream to be a head coach and to be able to fill that here with the atmosphere that the athletic department has created is really exciting.”
Winters said he has learned several valuable lessons working under Mohl for more than a decade.
“I think the biggest thing is that coach Mohl is always calm and collected,” Winters said, “and he’s taught me about Xs and Os and preparation. Those are just the little things but I could go on and on about what I’ve learned from coach Mohl in the last 11 years.”
Winters said he’s looking forward to having Mohl remain in the program.
“Not a lot of first year coaches get to have a guy with 20-plus years of coaching experience as an associate head coach,” Winters said. “To be able to sit down and bounce ideas off him is going to help me be successful.”
Vaught, whose team was 22-9 overall and advanced to the final four of the NJCAA Region XI tournament in the 2021-22 season, said he’s looking forward to having Mohl join his coaching staff.
“I’m so excited that coach Mohl will be joining the NIACC women’s basketball coaching staff,” Vaught said. “He’s an outstanding coach and Iowa Hall of Famer. He will make our program better.”
Mohl said he’s looking forward to being a part of both the men’s and women’s programs starting in the 2022-23 season.
“Brad’s a great guy, just like Jeremy,” Mohl said. “I’m here to support them and I’ll help if they’re looking for ideas.
“It’s their program and I like I’ve told them, they just need to tell me what they want me to do. Brad has done a great job. We had 22 wins on the women’s side last year and 20 on the men. That’s pretty impressive. Brad brings a lot of energy, obviously, and he’s in charge and he’ll do a great job with it.”