Griz mentor Wayne Tinkle named All-District 6 COY

Wayne Tinkle

Wayne Tinkle

March 21, 2012

KANSAS CITY, MO. (3/21/12) -- Sixth-year University of Montana head coach Wayne Tinkle has been named the 2012 NABC Division I All-District 6 "Coach of the Year" by The National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) the organization announced today. He was selected by his peers.

Tinkle made his second trip to "The Dance" as UM's head coach in 2011-12, as the 13th-seeded Grizzlies played the fourth-seeded Wisconsin Badgers in a second round NCAA Tournament game (a 73-49 loss) in Albuquerque, N.M. It was Tinkle's fifth trip to the NCAAs since coaching at his alma mater.

"It is a great honor to be recognized by your colleagues in the NABC," Tinkle said. "I really have to give credit to a great staff and our players. The coaches allowed me to stay focused at the task at hand. That's a big key when you have that kind of chemistry, and obviously our players executed on the court. It's a great thrill, and I really take it as an honor for our program.

"The thing that probably makes me most proud about this season was bringing the (Big Sky) tournament back to Missoula and winning it here," Tinkle said. "That is something I think this community really deserved, and we had gone a long time (1999-2000) since we'd hosted. That's probably our proudest moment."

His teams won 20 or more games the past three seasons in a row, going 22-10, 21-11, and 25-7 in 2011-12. He is 116-71 overall and 66-30 in Big Sky Conference games in his tenure.

His 25 victories this past season are the third most ever at Montana. He was recognized for UM's success in 2012, as he was chosen the Big Sky's "Coach of the Year" by his fellow league coaches. He is the fifth coach in school history (since the inaugural Big Sky season, 1963-64) to be named the conference's coach of the year, and the first in 20 years (Blaine Taylor, 1992).

Tinkle is one of only three coaches in school history to win 20 or more games in three straight seasons. Montana has 18 20-win seasons in its history, and just nine teams have won 22 games or more in a year. UM's 15 victories in Big Sky games in 2011-12 are the most ever in a season.



Two seasons ago, when Tinkle's Griz squad went 22-10 and won the league's post- season tourney, they advanced to the NCAA tournament, losing 62-57 to New Mexico.

"The loss and our performance (against Wisconsin) stings a little bit, but that lasted about a day," Tinkle said. "Then I started to shift and had to keep reminding myself what a remarkable year we had. We had some guys in yesterday sizing up for championship rings, and I asked them if they watched those (third round) games Friday night, and I said `I know - I wish we would have played better.' But then I added `hey, it was still a remarkable, historic season.' I think our guys have moved on as well.

"It was a heck of a year," Tinkle continued. "From playing for three (post-season tournament) championships in a row, to 14 wins in a row to a 15-1 record in league, and then the 25 wins overall. We did a lot of great things and certainly that is something that we can build off of moving forward."


District 1: Jimmy Patsos, Loyola (MD)

District 2: Leonard Hamilton, Florida State

District 3: Rick Byrd, Belmont

District 4: Fran Dunphy, Temple

District 5: Mike Brey, Notre Dame

District 6: Wayne Tinkle, Montana

District 7: Tom Izzo, Michigan State

District 8: Frank Haith, Missouri

District 9: Dan Monson, Long Beach State

District 10: Bruiser Flint, Drexel

District 11: Larry Eustachy, Southern Mississippi

District 12: Scott Nagy, South Dakota State

District 13: Tommy Amaker, Harvard

Co-District 14: Keith Dambrot, Akron

Co-District 14: Rob Murphy, Eastern Michigan

District 15: Horace Broadnax, Savannah State

District 16: Gregg Marshall, Wichita State

District 17: Steve Fisher, San Diego State

Co-District 18: Jim Ferry, Long Island

Co-District 18: Glenn Braica, St. Francis (NY)

Co-District 18: Andrew Toole, Robert Morris

District 19: Steve Prohm, Murray State

District 20: Tad Boyle, Colorado

District 21: John Calipari, Kentucky

District 22: Mike Young, Wofford

District 23: Scott Cross, Texas Arlington

District 24: Kermit Davis, Middle Tennessee State

About the National Association of Basketball Coaches:

Located in Kansas City, MO, the NABC was founded in 1927 by Phog Allen, the legendary basketball coach at the University of Kansas. Allen, a student of James Naismith, the inventor of basketball, organized coaches into this collective group to serve as Guardians of the Game. The NABC currently has nearly 5,000 members consisting primarily of university and college men's basketball coaches. All members of the NABC are expected to uphold the core values of being a Guardian of the Game by bringing attention to the positive aspects of the sport of basketball and the role coaches play in the academic and athletic lives of today's student-athletes. The four core values of being a Guardian of the Game are advocacy, leadership, service and education. Additional information about the NABC, its programs and membership, can be found at

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