Dana Altman is one of only six active coaches in NCAA Division I with 19 consecutive winning seasons. He is part of an exclusive fraternity that includes Mike Krzyzewski, Tom Izzo, Roy Williams, Bill Self and Jim Boeheim.
The 2013 National Coach of the Year and three-time Pac-12 Coach of the Year has won more games in his first six seasons than any coach in Oregon history. Altman is 154-64 in Eugene, and 564-307 in 27 seasons as a head coach at the NCAA Division I level in stints at Oregon, Creighton, Kansas State and Marshall.
Altman, the 19th head coach in the history of the University of Oregon men’s basketball program, has led the Ducks to six consecutive 20-win seasons and six postseason appearances, including four straight NCAA Tournaments for the first time in school history, winning at least one game in each of those years. Included in those NCAA appearances are an Elite Eight (2016) and a pair of Sweet 16s (2013, 2016). Altman now has 18 seasons of 20-plus wins to his credit (11 at Creighton, six at Oregon, one at Kansas State).
The 2015-16 season saw Altman reach new heights as a coach and achieve honors matched only by some of the very best mentors in the history of the Pac-12 Conference. The Ducks’ 31 wins were not only a school record, but also the most for Altman at the Division I level as he guided Oregon to the Pac-12’s regular season and conference title in the same year for the first time in school history. He also reached the NCAA’s Elite Eight for the first time and was named Pac-12 Coach of the Year for the third time in four seasons, a feat matched only by Hall of Famer Lute Olson of Arizona. The individual honors won by players under his guidance included all-American Dillon Brooks, Pac-12 Tournament MOP Elgin Cook, Pac-12 all-defensive selection Chris Boucher and Pac-12 all-freshman pick Tyler Dorsey.
In 2014-15, in one of the finest coaching performances of his career, Altman guided a team that had only three returning scholarship players to 26-10 record, a runner-up finish in the Pac-12 (13-5) and the third round of the NCAA Tournament. He was the runaway choice for Pac-12 Coach of the Year, while Joseph Young ied the school single-season scoring record in being named Pac-12 Player of the Year. Cook was an all-Pac-12 second-team selection, while Jordan Bell and Brooks made the Pac-12’s all-freshman team.
The 2013-14 season saw Altman win his 500th game as a Division I head coach when Oregon defeated Washington on Feb. 19. He also joined Basketball Hall of Famer Howard Hobson as the only men to lead Oregon to four consecutive 20-win seasons. He guided Oregon to a 24-10 overall record and an NCAA Tournament win. Young was an all-conference second team selection and an all-Pac-12 tournament pick, while Mike Moser was an honorable mention selection by the conference.
Altman’s 2012-13 Oregon Ducks became the first UO team since 2008 to qualify for the NCAA Tournament. The Ducks finished the season 28-9 and won the Pac-12 Tournament. Altman was named the Pac-12 Coach of the Year before going on to earn Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year honors. Senior E.J. Singler was an all-league first team selection, while Johnathan Loyd was named Most Outstanding Player of the Pac-12 Tournament as the honors were spread around nearly the entire team. Senior Arsalan Kazemi was a Pac-12 all-defensive pick before going on to become a second round draft choice of the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers.
During the 2011-12 season, Altman led the Ducks to a 24-10 overall record and a 13-5 Pac-12 Conference mark which was good for a share of second place in the final league standings. The Ducks earned a bid to the National Invitation Tournament and recorded victories over LSU and Iowa before falling at top-seed Washington in the tournament quarterfinals. Under Altman’s tutelage, four UO players were recognized as part of the 2012 Pac-12 All-Conference teams. Devoe Joseph became the first Duck since the 2006-07 season to be named first team all-conference. Singler was named to the all-conference second team and NABC All-District 20 second team, while Garrett Sim earned honorable mention all-league recognition and Tony Woods was named honorable mention all-defensive team.
In his first season at Oregon, Altman led the Ducks to just the 12th season of 20+ victories in the history of the program. He became just the third UO head coach to tally 20+ wins in his first season on the job. Oregon went 21-18 overall and 7-11 in Pac-12 play which earned them a seventh-place finish in the final league standings. Altman posted the second-highest win total of any first-year UO head coach. Only John Warren (30 wins in 1944-45) posted more in his first year on the sidelines. The 2011 postseason included a pair of wins at the Pac-10 Tournament, highlighted by a 76-59 upset win over No. 2-seed UCLA in the quarterfinals. Oregon participated in the 2011 College Basketball Invitational, defeating Altman’s former team ? Creighton ? in the best-of-three championship series.
Altman arrived at UO after spending 16 seasons at Creighton where he became the school’s all-time winningest coach with a record of 327-176 (.650). He led the Blue Jays to 13 consecutive postseason appearances, a stretch of 11 straight seasons with 20-plus wins, all while producing 10 or more league victories in each of the last 14 seasons. Those three feats were unmatched in the 103 years of the Missouri Valley Conference.
He won four Coach-of-the-Year awards from three different conferences in a span of 13 seasons, including back-to-back MVC coaching honors while he was at the Omaha, Neb., school in 2001 and 2002. Altman was a finalist for the Naismith National Coach of the Year Award and was named the NABC District 12 and USBWA District VI Coach of the Year following the 2002-03 campaign.
Creighton participated in seven NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournaments and five National Invitation Tournaments under Altman, advancing to the second round of the NCAA championships in both the 1998-99 and 2001-02 seasons. He led the school to a MVC regular-season title in 2000-01 - its first in 10 years. The Bluejays posted a school-record 29 wins in 2002-03, finishing the season 15th in the Associated Press poll and 23rd in the coaches’ voting.
Altman finished his career at Creighton ranking third all-time on the MVC list of all-time wins (327), trailing only Basketball Hall of Fame coaches Henry Iba (486) and Eddie Hickey (337). In 2007, he was one of 10 coaches named as part of the MVC’s All-Centennial Team. His teams claimed shares of three regular-season Missouri Valley Conference championships (including the 2008-09 crown) and six conference post-season tournament titles.
Student-athletes under his direction at CU earned six All-America honors on the court and four Academic All-America laurels in the classroom. Three players he coached at Creighton - Kyle Korver, Rodney Buford and Anthony Tolliver - have played in the NBA.
Along the way, Creighton established school records for most victories in a two-year (52), three-year (76) and four-year span (99). From 1998-99 through 2008-09, Creighton was one of just six schools to win 20 or more games each of those seasons, an elite list that also included Duke, Florida, Gonzaga, Kansas and Syracuse.
Altman compiled a 68-54 record in four seasons (1990-94) at Kansas State. During that time, Altman led the Wildcats to three straight postseason tourneys and was named the Big Eight Conference Coach of the Year after leading KSU to a 19-11 record and an appearance in the NCAA Tournament in 1993.
Altman’s final Kansas State club turned heads nationally with a 68-64 win at No. 1 Kansas on Jan. 17, 1994. K-State eventually advanced to play in the NIT Final Four. Altman’s success at KSU followed him from a brief head coaching stint at Marshall where he was named Southern Conference Coach of the Year in 1990.
While head coach at Southeast Junior College in Fairbury, Neb., his first team (1982-83) rolled to a 29-6 record and a third-place finish in the junior college national tournament and Altman was honored as both Region 9 and the Nebraska College Coach of the Year.
In 1983, Altman accepted the head coaching position at Moberly (Mo.) Junior College, with a three-year run resulting in a staggering 94-18 record (25-9 in 1983-84; 35-5 with a third-place finish at the national tourney in 1984-85; and a 34-4 mark in 1985-86 with a sixth-place finish at nationals).
He was named Region 16 Coach of the Year in both the 1984-85 and 1985-86 seasons, and was also a finalist for 1986 National Junior College Athletic Association Coach of the Year accolades.
Altman’s playing career began at Southeast Junior College in 1976, where he captained teams to a 22-10 mark in his freshman year and a 26-5 record in his sophomore season.
Altman completed his undergraduate education and playing career at Eastern New Mexico University. After earning his associate degree in business administration from Southeast in 1978, Altman graduated magna cum laude from Eastern New Mexico in 1980 with his bachelor’s degree in the same field.
Altman received his master of business administration degree from Western (Colo.) State in 1981. He served as an assistant coach on the Western State staff from 1980-82.
At Wilber (Neb.) High School, Altman was a two-sport letterman, earning all-conference honors as a quarterback on the football team and as a guard in basketball. Altman was born June 16, 1958, in Crete, Neb. He and his wife, the former Reva Phillips of Stanton, Neb., have three sons, Jordan, Chase and Spencer, and one daughter, Audra.