Eric Mussleman

Eric Mussleman

I grew up in New York and lived there for 34 years until I got divorced and moved 1600 miles to my new home in Texas.  I love New York and miss it but that does not mean that Texas hasn’t been great to me because it has.  It was here that I discovered endurance sports and specifically the sport of triathlon.  Triathlon has given me new life through all the challenges it presents.  I no longer look at life the same way and I can say that is in part due to my endeavor into this sport.

Saturday, 08 September 2018 20:50

The Importance of Your Inner Circle

John Wooden would tell his players to list the names of five people they were closest to personally, professionally and within a social organization. Then he would advise his players to look at those names and ask, “Are they going where you’re going? Are they the kind of people you want on your journey to that place?” 

It was a life-changing experience. It forced his players to look at the people they were closest to and reconsider who they chose to include in their lives. You want to have an inner circle that is going to challenge and motivate you to reach your goals, this includes personal and professional goals. You interact with your inner circle on a daily basis and you want that communication to be positive and goal driven.

We tell Pack players that they are never going to outperform their inner circle and challenge them to strongly consider who they have in their circle.

Friday, 07 September 2018 22:49

Pack One More Drill

The Pack is an experienced and veteran team this year loaded with a ton of offensive fire power. We have been emphasizing sharing the ball in our pre-season workouts. 

In order to emphasize sharing the ball, we must implement drills that do just that. Today we introduced the “Pack One More Drill”. The drill consists of 4 players on the court, 2 in the corners and 2 in the slots. The ball is being reversed quickly until the last person gets it. The last person gets the shot until each of the 4 players have shot the ball. They rotate spots until they have gone all the way around the arc. Adding to the drill, we started with 2 skip passes to simulate something that would happen in the game.

Key factors to the drill…

  • Quick reversals
  • Passes on target
  • Shot ready on the catch
  • Communicating “one more” loud and clear
  • Constant communication by all players
  • High energy
  • Game speed passes
  • Game speed shots

This was a great drill to get the Pack moving the ball and simulating how we want to play this season. 

Pack One More Drill...

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With Skip Pass....

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Thursday, 06 September 2018 16:18

Rex Walters Joins Wolf Pack Coaching Staff

The University of Nevada head men's basketball coach Eric Musselman has added Rex Walter to his staff as Special Assistant to the Head Coach.   Walters brings 10 years of collegiate head coaching experience to the staff after eight years at San Francisco and two at Florida Atlantic.  He also spent a season as the head coach of the Grand Rapids Drive in the NBA Developmental League.  Walters is the third former college head coach to work under Musselman at Nevada (Dave Rice and Johnny Jones). 
 
"When we started the search for this position, we set a few parameters that were important to our program," Musselman said. First and foremost, we wanted to find someone who had prior head coaching experience. This trait has been something that has served our program both on and off the court very well. We also wanted to find someone that had NBA playing and possibly coaching experience, and with Rex, we were able to accomplish both. Since the moment he stepped on campus, he has hit the ground running. We are extremely excited to add Rex's basketball knowledge and acumen to our staff. He is a tremendous asset to our staff and program as a whole."
  
In 10 seasons as a head coach he posted a career record of 184-184.  In eight seasons at USF he led the Dons to 20 win seasons in 2011-12 and 2013-14.  In 2013-14 USF went 21-12 and finished second in the West Coast Conference which earned him WCC Coach of the Year honors.  He led the Dons to three postseason appearances, NIT in 2014, CBI in 2012 and CIT in 2011.  He finished with a record of 127-127 at USF.  At FAU he led the Owls to a 31-33 record in his two season. His first collegiate coaching position was as an assistant coach at Valparaiso from 2003-05.
 
His collegiate playing career began at Northwestern where he earned Big 10 honorable mention honors after scoring 17.6 points per game.  After his sophomore season he transferred to Kansas where he played for hall of fame coach Roy Williams.  In 1992 he was named Big XII Newcomer of the Year and in 1993 Big XIII Male Athlete of the Year.  He garnered All-America honors and twice was named to the All-Big XII team.  Twice he helped KU win Big XII titles and in 1993 the Jayhawks reached the Final Four.  In 68 career starts at KU he averaged 15.6 points and led the team in scoring his junior and senior seasons.
 
Professionally he played 10 seasons, seven in the NBA with the New Jersey Nets (1993-95), Philadelphia 76ers (1995-98) and Miami Heat (1998-2000). He also had stints with Baloncesto Leon (2000), the Kansas City Knights (2000-01; 2002-03) and CB Gran Canaria (2001-02).
 
The New Jersey Nets selected Walters with the 16th overall pick in the 1993 NBA Draft. As a rookie, Walters saw limited playing time but led the team in field goal percentage (.522) and hit 14-of-28 three-point attempts.
 
In 1995-96, Walters was dealt to Philadelphia and started the last eight games of the season. He played in 59 games for Philadelphia in 1996-97, making 16 starts, but primarily served as the team's third guard behind Allen Iverson and Jerry Stackhouse. He led the team in three-point shooting with a .384 mark while averaging 6.8 points a game.
 
In 1993 he received his bachelor's of science degree in education from Kansas.  Walters and his wife, Deanna have five children, Addison, Drew, Riley, Gunner and Ace.   

 

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Wednesday, 05 September 2018 16:54

Sweet 16 Rematch Set for National TV

The University of Nevada men's basketball team's Sweet 16 rematch with Loyola Chicago will air on ESPNews on Nov. 27 at 5 p.m. PT from Gentile Arena.  The game is part of the 2018 Challenge Series that matches teams from the Mountain West and Missouri Valley Conference.  The game is a rematch of the Sweet 16 game played in Atlanta last season won by the Ramblers 69-68.

The Wolf Pack are 3-0 in the series under head coach Eric Musselman with wins over Illinois State (98-68), at Bradley (91-69) and Drake (79-71).  Overall the Pack is 3-1 in the Challenge Series with a 76-66 loss coming in 2012 to Drake.

"To have a team like Loyola on our schedule is huge," said Musselman. "Coach Porter Moser has done a tremendous job there and will continue to bring succes to the program. They are coming off of a Final Four appearance and return a solid core. This rematch will be a big test for our program and an incredible stage for the Mountain West Conference."

Nevada returns four senior starters from its squad that reached the Sweet 16, captured a second consecutive Mountain West title and tied the school record with 29 wins.  Back is MW Player of the Year and AP honorable mention selection Caleb Martin who averaged 18.9 points per game.  Twin brother Cody Martin the MW Defensive Player of the Year is back after averaging 14 points, 6.3 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game.  First-team All-MW selection Jordan Caroline also returns for his senior season after scoring 17.7 points per game and grabbed a team-high 8.6 rebounds per contest.  Senior point guard Lindsey Drew who missed the final 10 games of last season with an achilles injury is working his way back from the injury.  Drew, an all MW Defensive teal selection, averaged 8.1 points, 4.1 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game.

Loyola returns three starters, including Associated Press Honorable Mention All-America guard Clayton Custer, from last season's 32-win outfit that reached the NCAA Final Four for the first time in 55 years. 

Monday, 03 September 2018 23:21

Todd Okeson Returns to Reno

The University of Nevada Men's Basketball program welcomes back a familiar face in former Wolf Pack standout, Todd Okeson. The recently hired dssistant director of basketball operations returns to Reno after numerous stops along the collegiate and professional levels.

"We are excited to welcome Todd and his family back to Wolf Pack Nation," said Eric Musselman. "Todd has a wealth of experience both as a player and a coach. He will help in many areas of our program, will be a great source for our athletes and will be a great overall addition to our staff."

Okeson's most recent stop was at the University of Hawaii where he held the position of Director of Basketball Operations for the last two seasons (2016-18). At Hawaii Todd helped coordinate the program’s academics, youth camps, housing, travel needs and served as a liaison for community, booster, and marketing efforts. He also provided administrative support for recruiting and budgeting.

Prior to Hawaii Todd was an assisatnt coach at Southern Utah for four seasons (2012-16). In the 2015-16 season he briefly served as the program’s interim head coach. At Southern Utah Todd was the team’s offensive coordinator and worked with the team’s backcourt. He was also in charge of scheduling, recruiting, and team academics.

Prior to Southern Utah, Okeson spent three years at the University of Georgia as a graduate assistant and then as an operations assistant (2009-12).  He also boasts experience in the pro ranks as an operations assistant with the Reno Bighorns of the NBDL (2008-09).  This makes four current Nevada Basketball staff members with experience working in the pros (Eric Musselman, Anthony Ruta, and Mike Ekanem).

Okeson played professionally in Europe and in the American Basketball Association and United States Basketball League, before returning to Reno to begin his coaching career as a program assistant with Nevada in 2006.
 
In two seasons at Nevada, Okeson averaged 10.7 points, three assists and 2.5 rebounds per game.  The Pack went 43-23 and captured the 2004 Western Athletic Conference title with a 13-5 mark.  Nevada advanced to its first Sweet 16 in 2004 after wins over Michigan State and Gonzaga before falling to Georgia Tech.  The Pack finished the year 25-9.

"I’m grateful to Coach Musselman for providing me with this amazing opportunity to once again be a part of the Pack," Todd Okeson said. "The coaching staff and players are phenomenal, and I can’t wait to help in whatever way I can.  My family and I are thrilled to be back at Nevada and in this great community."

Okeson and his wife Natalie have a son, Gaines, and two daughters Micah and Campbell.

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Sunday, 02 September 2018 16:47

Otto Kelly Speaks to the Pack

University of Nevada alumni, Otto Kelly, spoke to the Pack last week. Kelly, who serves as a pastor and motivational speaker, had an important message to the team. A constant theme in his words were taking responsibility as a man. He emphasized that Pack players must understand the importance of taking responsibility on a daily basis. This included and was not limited to being responsible in the classroom, community and on the basketball court. He told our player's they were all blessed with a gift and to not take it for granted. He also told the Pack how important it is to live in the present and take advantage of the opportunities they have in front of them.

Kelly was a member of the Football team here at Nevada and later on went to play professionally for the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs. Following his football career, he embarked on a career of serving others. He spent 11 years in the Washoe County Department of Juvenile Services where he earned numerous awards consisting of the NAACP Youth Advocacy Award, Nevada Police Research Institute Distinguished Community Service Award and the Truckee Meadows Community Staff Award. He became a full time pastor in 1999 and is currently the Lead Pastor for Word of Life Ministries. 

We want to thank Otto for his time and we look forward to doing community service with him in the future!

Thursday, 30 August 2018 17:28

The Weight Vest Approach

The Wolf Pack used one of Coach Musselman’s father, Bill Musselman's, coaching methods at practice yesterday having players wear weighted vests. The elder Musselman used the weight vest tactic at the University of Minnesota where he coached the Gophers to a Big Ten Championship.  Pack players vested up for a segment of our practice adding extra resistance to them and forcing them to push through fatigue.  

Coach Bill Musselman would use weighted vests for the entire year with his players. One purpose of the weighted vests is to give one team an advantage or disadvantage. Another idea behind it was that when you take the vest off, playing is much easier. It teaches players mental toughness to fight through the fatigue and also physical toughness because of the added weight. Research has proven this to be true, as it adds resistance, improves conditioning, and simulates playing through contact. It can force players to use more legs while shooting as well. When the players take the vests off, they will move at an entirely different speed. 

It was great to bring an old tactic back to practice and use with Pack players. We incoporated this into practices starting the first week of the fall and will continue to use the vests for the remainder of the pre-season.

Thursday, 30 August 2018 02:37

Honoring an NBA Legend

Yesterday at practice we honored NBA legend Manu Ginobli, who retired earlier this week after a successful career with the San Antonio Spurs. Ginobli revolutionized the game of basketball with his style of play and is known for bringing the “Euro Step” to the NBA. He was a 16 year NBA veteran with 4 NBA Championships and 2 All Star appearances. 

The Pack honored Manu by dedicating time during our practice to model his game. Practicing the different types of finishes he would use, euro steps, and replicating his game winning shots. Ginobli will always be remembered and we want to thank him for the impact he had on the game of basketball. 

For seven consecutive days we put out a series of videos called "Mic'd Up." In this series fans were able to get an inside look at Wolf Pack practices from our eight week Summer Player Development progam. During that eight week span, we were allowed four hours on the court per NCAA rules. Most weeks consisted of 1 hour long practices Monday through Thursday in addition to our four hours of strength and conditioning. The videos were posted on the Nevada Men's Basketball Twitter and Instagram accounts (@NevadaHoops). If you missed any of the MI'd Up videos, the links are below... Enjoy!

 

Part 1 - Senior guard Caleb Martin
https://twitter.com/NevadaHoops/status/1032024544939147264

Part 2 - Assistant coach Gus Argenal
https://twitter.com/NevadaHoops/status/1032386933413040133

Part 3 - Junior guard Jazz Johnson
https://twitter.com/NevadaHoops/status/1032762815897989120

Part 4 - Assistant coach Anthony Ruta
https://twitter.com/NevadaHoops/status/1033103876621135872

Part 5 - Senior forward Treshawn Thurman
https://twitter.com/NevadaHoops/status/1033467440120745984

Part 6 - Assistant coach Brandon Dunson
https://twitter.com/NevadaHoops/status/1033898846101757952

Part 7 - Coach Eric Musselman
https://twitter.com/NevadaHoops/status/1034470672393793536

 

Be sure to follow us on Twitter and Instagram for insight and up to date info on anything and everything Nevada Basketball:
Twitter - @NevadaHoops
Instagram - @nevadahoops

 

Sunday, 26 August 2018 21:22

JoJo Anderson Added to the Pack

University of Nevada Men's Basketball is proud to announce the addition of JoJo Anderson to the 2018-19 Wolf Pack roster. The Houston, Texas native comes to University of Nevada by way of Northern Arizona University where he played his freshman and sophomore seasons. 

As a sophomore, Anderson was the second leading scorer for the NAU Lumberjacks with an average of 11.1 points per game. He was also second on the team in assists with 2.2 per game. 

"Adding JoJo Anderson to our team as a walk-on is an absolute steal," Nevada head coach Eric Musselman stated. "He is a big time player that will have a whole year to work in our system and continue to improve his game. We are excited about this addition and what JoJo adds to the future of our program."

Due to NCAA transfer rules, JoJo Anderson will sit out this season and will be eligible to compete in the 2019-2020 season. 

The Anderson File:
2017-18
Northern Arizona University
11.1ppg; 1.8rpg; 2.2 apg; 35% FG; 33% 3FG; 81% FT

2016-17
Northern Arizona University
7.4ppg; 3.2rpg; 2.5 apg; 41% FG; 32% 3FG; 70% FT

Prior to NAU:
-Played post grad season at 22ft Academy under coach Ryan Schmidt
-Prior to 22ft Academy, was a four-year letterman and three-year starter at Jack Yates High School in Houston
-McDonald’s All-American Game nominee…Earned all-district and all-state honors…Helped his team to back-to-back state championships

Personal:
Born Joseph “JoJo” Anderson on May 7, 1996…Son of Darrel and Felesha Anderson…Father, Darrel, played basketball overseas for eight years…Has two sisters, Devyn and Rachel…Was a member of the national honor society…Enjoys playing video games.

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