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Former Montana Western player, coach Colby Blaine named NAIA DII coach of the year

Posted at 9:31 AM, Mar 23, 2020

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Former Montana Western men's basketball player and assistant coach Colby Blaine was named the NAIA Division II men's basketball coach of the year, the organization announced recently.

Blaine guided College of Idaho to a perfect 20-0 Cascade Collegiate Conference record and a 30-3 overall mark as the Yotes entered the NAIA DII national tournament as the No. 1 team in the nation. Blaine and the Yotes were on a 24-game win streak after winning the Cascade tournament.

College of Idaho defeated Northwestern (Iowa) 67-49 on the first day of the NAIA DII national tournament, but play was canceled the following day due to the growing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The tournament win pushed the team's streak to 25 consecutive wins, a program record. The Yotes led the NAIA in defensive field goal percentage, .392, which was the best the program had seen since 1963.

Blaine is a 2009 graduate of Montana Western who transferred to Dillon and coached under Steve Keller. In April 2018, Blaine was one of three announced coaching finalists for Western when Keller left for the University of Providence, but Blaine was named College of Idaho's 16th men's basketball coach after spending the previous two seasons as the Yotes' associate head coach.

This season marked his sixth with the College of Idaho program and second as head coach, where he has guided the Yotes to 62 wins compared to only nine losses.