Breaking news, sports and campus news from Western Kentucky University

Steve Lutz accepts head coaching job at Oklahoma State

Dominic Di Palermo
WKU Head Coach Steve Lutz puts his head in his hands towards the end of the second half of WKU’s game against Marquette during the March Madness Round of 64 at the Gainbridge Field house in Indianapolis on Friday, March 22, 2024. Marquette won 87-69 and advanced to the second round of the tournament.

Sticking to a recent trend of Kentucky one and done’s, WKU men’s basketball Head Coach, Steve Lutz, accepted an offer on April 1, becoming the next Head Coach of the Oklahoma State Cowboys. 

Lutz, who spent his previous two years in the Lone Star state, coaching Texas A&M Corpus Christi, will head south once again to take over the reins from former Cowboy coach, Mike Boynton. 

The OSU position was one of many that Lutz has been tied to as Louisville and SMU both emerged as rumored landing spots.

During his stint at both WKU and TX A&M-CC, Coach Lutz propelled both teams to 80+ PPG, with his time with the Hilltoppers ranking top 40 in total scoring and fast breaks points.

In the 2023-2024 season, Lutz secured his base salary of $650,000 with a $100,000 bonus for the NCAA Tournament berth. 

The first order of business for Lutz will be sitting down with Javon Small and Brandon Garrison, two of the Cowboys’ top four leading scorers who have entered the transfer portal. 

However, this is not a new task for Lutz. When he first arrived at WKU, Lutz convinced Tyrone Marshall Jr. to suit up for the Hilltoppers once again, and remove his name from the portal.

After the team’s March Madness loss to Marquette, Marshall spoke on what that conversation sounded like.

“It was really hard to adjust for a little bit coming from Coach Stansbury to Coach Lutz because I was in the process of hitting the portal until me and Lutz had sat down and had a talk,” Marshall said. “And he told me ‘I’m going to make you a better player’ and I believed him and he did and I thank him for that.”

But it’s not just convincing players to stay that is his specialty. His final year with Purdue, and the last time he was in a Power 5 conference, Lutz secured Zach Edey’s recruitment. Edey is now a two-time consensus All-American, two-time Big-10 POTY, 2022-2023 AP POTY, and is currently in the running to go back to back in that award.

Oklahoma State capped off their 2023-2024 season with a 12-20 record, and a tie for last place in the Big 12, with a 4-14 conference record.

However, Lutz also has a history of being able to flip programs in one year.

During the 2020-2021 season, TA&M-CC to picked up five wins in their 24 games. Yet, just one season with Coach Lutz provided the Islanders with a 47-23 record in his two years, with two berths to the NCAA Tournament.

While the change wasn’t as drastic in Bowling Green, Coach Lutz still shined in his lone year on the Hill. Going from a 17-16 season to a 22-12 record and an NCAA Tournament berth for the first time in over a decade, it has become a habit for Lutz to win in very little time.

More to Discover