Otzelberger announces changes to coaching staff


Jacob Rice

T.J. Otzelberger calls out directions to the Cyclones during their 53-36 loss to Oklahoma State on March 2.

James Powell

Iowa State men’s basketball will officially feature some fresh faces on its coaching staff.

T.J. Otzelberger welcomed Erik Crawford, Nick Schmidt and Mo Ba into new roles for the upcoming basketball season, announced Tuesday via Twitter.

Schmidt and Ba were previously on staff for Otzelberger and were promoted, while Crawford will enter his first stint with Iowa State.

Schmidt, who served as the recruiting and player development coordinator last season, has been promoted to assistant coach to help fill the void left by Daniyal Robinson. Robinson accepted a head coaching position at Cleveland State after seven years with the Cyclones.

“Nate [Schmidt] has impacted Iowa State Basketball in a positive manner for a number of years,” Otzelberger said in a press release Tuesday. “He’s served as a graduate assistant, video coordinator and director of player development. His ability to build relationships with student-athletes and unlock their potential is unparalleled. We are excited for Nate to excel in his new role as assistant coach.”

Ba is entering his second year in the program, and has been promoted to assistant director of player development after being hired as a graduate assistant in 2021-22.

“I would like to thank Coach T.J. for the opportunity to continue to work with this great staff and amazing young men here at Iowa State,” Ba said in the release. “I am looking forward to helping our players become successful both on and off the court. I’m so excited about the future of this program and can’t wait to be a part of Hilton Magic next season.”

Crawford has been welcomed onto staff and will serve as the director of player development. Crawford has spent the past 12 seasons at Northern Iowa but has experience working with Otzelberger at Iowa State.

“Erik and I worked together as Cyclones dating back to 2006,” Otzelberger said. “His work ethic, basketball IQ and passion for player development make him the perfect addition to our staff. He’s been an integral part of the success at UNI and we know he will have an immediate impact on our program.

Crawford served as graduate manager and assistant director of basketball operations from 2006-10. He has also worked for Creighton in his time spent amid the college basketball landscape.