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Montana Western set to host men’s basketball coaching finalists

Posted at 11:31 AM, Apr 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-05 15:50:59-04

DILLON — Montana Western has narrowed its search for a men’s basketball coach to three candidates, and the athletic department is bringing the three finalists to campus next week.

Jerry Olson will visit Western on Monday, Michael Larsen will visit on Wednesday and Colby Blaine on Thursday.

Olson is the likely the most recognizable name to Montana basketball fans. He was previously the top assistant at Montana State University under then-coach Mick Durham, who was recently named the head coach at MSU Billings. Olson has spent the past 11 seasons as the head men’s coach at Oklahoma Panhandle State University.

Larsen just completed his eighth season at Dakota State University, where he spent five years as the top assistant coach.

Blaine has spent the past two seasons as the associated head coach at the College of Idaho. He’s been a top assistant with the Coyotes for four seasons after previously spending five seasons at the College of Southern Idaho.

Western is seeking a new head coach for the first time in 11 years after Steve Keller left the program this offseason to take over the reins at the University of Providence. The Bulldogs posted a 27-8 overall record during the 2017-18 season, which ended with an 86-82 loss to Graceland (Iowa) in the NAIA quarterfinals.