UAB Director of Athletics Brian Mackin today introduced Jerod Haase as the fifth head coach in the 34-year history of the Blazer men’s basketball program.
Haase, who turns 38 on April 1, was most recently an assistant coach at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He played for UNC Coach Roy Williams at Kansas and has spent the last 13 years on Williams’ staff with the Jayhawks and at North Carolina. He helped the Tar Heels to national championships in 2005 and 2009. Known as a top recruiter, he has also served as the head coach for the junior varsity team five times in his nine-year UNC tenure.
“We are truly thrilled to have been able to attract a coach the caliber of Jerod Haase,” said Mackin. “Having been a part of basketball at Kansas and North Carolina, he has been around winning programs his entire career, both as a player and coach. We know he will help elevate our program and excite our fans as we move forward with our program.”
“No one has higher expectation for our UAB basketball program than me,” Haase said in a Tuesday morning press conference. “I will be fully committed to the team, to UAB and to the city of Birmingham. I'll give everything I have. I'll hire a great staff. I will work tirelessly, and I will learn from the legacy of Coach Gene Bartow and follow the path that he created and try and implement some of the things he did.”
“Jerod Haase is a terrific match for UAB,” said UAB president Carol Garrison. “As a former academic All-American, Coach Haase knows first-hand the importance of a rich academic experience. He is committed to developing a winning team and students who will win in life, and UAB is committed to helping him achieve those goals.
“Coach Haase will bring a very exciting brand of basketball to Bartow Arena. I’m looking forward to watching his teams compete,” Garrison said.
A 1997 Kansas graduate in business administration, Haase’s first job came at his alma mater as the director of basketball operations from 1999-2003. During that time, the Jayhawks reached the 2002 Final Four and the national championship game in 2003.
When Williams was named head coach at North Carolina prior to the 2003-04 season, he brought Haase with him as an assistant coach and director of operations, a title he held from 2003-09. It was a unique position that rotated from assistant coach to director of operations every other year. Haase has served exclusively as an assistant coach since the 2009-10 season.
Haase promises UAB’s style of play will be up-tempo offensively and defensively, and will have some hallmarks of Roy Williams-coached teams. He does not expect the transition to take much time.
“I do not have a five-year plan,” Haase said. “This is not about five years from now I hope we make the NCAA Tournament and do some damage in it. We can win, and we can win right away.”
A native of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., Haase played basketball for the University of California in 1992-93 and then transferred to Kansas. He helped lead the Jayhawks to three consecutive conference titles and finished his career ranked in the top 10 among school leaders in assists, three-point field goals and steals.
He started 99 of 101 games at Kansas and scored 1,264 points, averaging 12.5 per game and reaching double figures 74 times. While at KU, Haase was a candidate for the Naismith and Wooden Awards.
Haase was a first-team GTE Academic All-American as a senior, a second-team Academic All-American as a junior and was an academic all-conference selection three times. The Jayhawks’ Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 1997, Haase later earned a master’s degree in business at KU in 2000.
As a senior in 1996-97, Haase started with Jacque Vaughn, Scot Pollard, Paul Pierce and Raef LaFrentz as Kansas finished with a 34-2 record. He averaged 12.0 points per game despite playing with a broken wrist. As a sophomore in 1994-95, he scored 15.0 points a game, was named the Big Eight Conference Newcomer of the Year and also was tabbed a second-team all-conference selection.
Haase started 23 games in 1992-93 as a freshman at Cal, where he teamed in the backcourt with Jason Kidd.
Haase co-wrote “Floor Burns,” detailing the 1996-97 KU season, which sold more than 30,000 copies. Floor burns are a statistic the Kansas stat crew created in honor of Haase, who had 165 of them as a junior. He has also produced a basketball instructional video.
He is married to the former Mindy Meidinger of Lenexa, Kan. The couple has two sons, Gavin, 5, and Garrett, 2, and a daughter, Gabrielle, born earlier this year.