CALDWELL, Idaho – Montana Western has lost one of its candidates for its head men’s basketball coaching position.
Colby Blaine, who was set to be on the Bulldogs’ campus for a meet and greet on Thursday, was named the College of Idaho’s 16th men’s basketball head coach on Tuesday. Blaine spent the past two seasons as the Coyotes’ associate head coach under Scott Garson, who recently resigned after five seasons to accept an assistant coaching position with NCAA Division I Santa Clara University.
“I think the word excitement is an understatement,” Blaine said in a release from the College of Idaho. “Pumped, stoked, eager, anxious – excited is definitely an understatement. Getting to work for Coach Garson has changed my life. What he has taught me over the last four years completely shaped my coaching style.”
Blaine was among three announced finalists for the job at Western vacated by Steve Keller, who left the Bulldogs to take the same position at the University of Providence. Blaine, a 2009 Western graduate, actually got his coaching start under Keller before spending five seasons as an assistant at the College of Southern Idaho. Blaine has been at the College of Idaho the past four seasons.
Jerry Olson and Michael Larsen are the only other announced finalists for the opening at Western. Olson, who was previously the top assistant at Montana State University under then-coach Mick Durham, was on campus for a meet and greet on Monday. Olson 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. He’s scheduled to visit the Western campus on Wednesday.