Mike Montgomery Named Finalist for Henry Iba Award

March 2, 2009

BERKELEY - California head coach Mike Montgomery has been named a finalist for the 2009 Henry Iba Award, as announced today by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association, to be presented to the association's national coach of the year.

The Henry Iba Award is awarded to the USBWA's Coach of the Year. The award has also been presented since 1959 and is named for the legendary Oklahoma State coach.

The presentation of this year's award will take place on Friday, April 3, at the USBWA's annual awards breakfast at the downtown Detroit Athletic Club in conjunction with the men's Final Four. The breakfast will also honor the winner of the Oscar Robertson Trophy, the association's player of the year, as well as the 1979 Michigan State national championship team that was led by Earvin 'Magic' Johnson.

The Henry Iba Award is voted on by the entire membership of the association, which consists of nearly 800 journalists. The ballot will be distributed to the membership later today.

In his first year as head coach at Cal, Montgomery became the third consecutive Cal coach to reach 20 wins in his first season. The Golden Bears' 10-6 Pac-10 record is already a major improvement over both the 2007 and '08 seasons with two contests still to play. The Bears were 6-12 in league action the past two years. Cal, now 16-2 at home, has its most wins at Haas Pavilion since the Bears went 17-1 in 2001-02. The mark is a significant improvement over the last two seasons when the Bears combined to go 19-15 in Berkeley.

The following coaches are finalists for the Henry Iba Award:

Mike Anderson, MissouriJohn Calipari, MemphisJeff Capel, OklahomaJamie Dixon, PittsburghMike Montgomery, CaliforniaStew Morrill, Utah StateMatt Painter, PurdueOliver Purnell, ClemsonBill Self, KansasBrad Stevens, Butler
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