Merry Christmas, and thanks for playing. Word came out today that Idaho State coach Joe O’Brien resigned from Idaho State this afternoon on the heels of a 2-8 record. O’Brien was head coach of the Bengals since 2006 and in his first three years, led the Bengals to the Big Sky Tournament and a fourth place finish in the 2007-08 and 2008-09 seasons. For his career at Idaho State he finished with a 56-105 record and 33-46 in Big Sky play.
This one doesn’t seem like a “resign-or-get fired” ultimatum deal at face value. In a sense, seems like O’Brien saw the writing on the wall. His best ISU team finished fourth in the Big Sky in 2008-09, going 9-7 in conference but 13-19 overall. O’Brien never won more than 13 games total in five full seasons, doing it twice, but fell down the last two. He had two starters returning in Chase Grabau and Abner Moreira.
ISU is minus-6.4 in the scoring margin dept (71.9 OPP, 65.5 ISU) minus-2.4 in rebound margin dept (35.4 OPP, 33 ISU) and minus-1.3 in turnovers (15.5 ISU, 14.2 OPP).
Taking his place is assistant coach Dean Martin, who is in his first year on the ISU staff. Martin was the head coach of Potros Itson, a professional team in Mexico, last season, and has NBA Development League coaching chops and ties to UNLV (2001-2004), among other schools.