April 5, 2006
Columbia, Mo. -
University of Missouri Men's Basketball Coach Mike Anderson announced on Wednesday (April 5) that Matt Zimmerman has been hired as an assistant coach on the Tigers' staff. Zimmerman spent four seasons with Anderson as an assistant coach at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and helped the Blazers to an 89-41 overall record and three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances.
During those three NCAA Tournament runs, the Blazers toppled No. 1 ranked Kentucky to reach the Sweet 16 in 2004 and defeated SEC West Champion LSU in the opening round in 2005. This season, UAB once again qualified for NCAA Tournament competition after racking up a 24-7 overall mark and a No. 9 seed in the "Big Dance". The Blazers finished the regular season ranked among the nation's Top 25 in both the Associated Press and USA Today Coaches polls and were 2-0 vs. Big 12 Conference foes Nebraska and Oklahoma State. In 2004, UAB claimed its first Conference USA title, just one season after Anderson and Zimmerman arrived in Birmingham to rejuvenate a downtrodden program that had won just 13 games the year before their arrival.
"I'm excited to have Matt remain on my staff," Missouri head coach Mike Anderson said. "Matt is a high-energy coach that brings a wealth of basketball knowledge and his combination of high school and collegiate coaching experience allows him to teach the game at a high level. Matt was a vital member of our staff at UAB and to have him with us at Missouri will allow us to continue accomplishing the goals we originally set as a staff four years ago."
Prior to his four seasons at UAB, Zimmerman spent seven years on the prep scene in Arkansas at Dardanelle and Plainview-Rover high schools. A native of St. Vincent, Ark., Zimmerman racked up a 74-46 record in his four campaigns at Dardanelle, with his 1999-2000 club advancing to the quarterfinals of the Class AAA State Tournament. That unit finished the season with a 24-11 overall record and a No. 7 final ranking. His 2001 team also qualified for state tournament competition while recording a 17-10 overall record. In his final season on the prep circuit, Zimmerman led Dardanelle to an 18-12 record and earned the 4AAA District tournament championship. Zimmerman was named 4AAA District Coach of the Year following the 2000 season and in his last three seasons, his Sand Lizards twice upset Arkansas' No. 2 and No. 3-ranked teams. He was named the KARV Dream Team Coach of the Year and River Valley Radio Coach of the Year in 2000.
"It was hard leaving our team at UAB, but what an awesome opportunity to come to a school like Missouri," Zimmerman said. "We really feel like this is a sleeping giant of a program. I would like to thank Coach Anderson for bringing me along and now we are anxious to get to work."
In the three seasons prior to becoming the head coach at Dardanelle, Zimmerman served as head basketball coach and athletics director at Plainview-Rover High School from 1995-98. Zimmerman recorded three 4B South Conference crowns and was selected the 4B South Conference's Outstanding Boys Coach in 1996. Zimmerman also coached the girls team, which advanced to the Class B State Tournament in 1997 and finished with a state ranking of No. 10.
Zimmerman was indoctrinated into the coaching profession during his time as head manager and student assistant at the University of Arkansas under Razorback head coach Nolan Richardson and assistant head coach Anderson. During his three campaigns, 1987-90, the Hogs won a pair of Southwest Conference crowns, two Southwest Conference Tournament titles and made three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. Zimmerman aided with Arkansas' 1989-90 team, which advanced to the NCAA Tournament Final Four and finished with a 30-5 overall record. Zimmerman also worked with the Razorback Basketball Camp, serving as a coach from 1986-2001.
Upon graduating from Arkansas in 1990 with a degree in physical education, Zimmerman served in the United States Army from 1990-95 and achieved the rank of captain. He graduated from the U.S. Army Airborne School in 1991 and was a member of the 1st Infantry Division (The Big Red One) from 1991-95. He also served as Platoon Leader, Shop Officer, Company Executive Officer and Battalion S-1 during his Army tenure.
Zimmerman graduated from Wonderview High School (Ark.) where he was a standout on the hardwood. Wonderview achieved a 133-19 record during his five seasons, including a 36-4 campaign as a junior, which culminated with a runner-up finish at the 1985 state tournament.
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