COLUMBUS, Ohio – After three seasons as the Butler bulldogs head coach, Chris Holtmann was formally introduced to the media on Monday morning as Ohio State’s new head men’s basketball coach.
“This was a decision that I had to work through,” Holtmann said at the podium in Columbus. “Gene [Smith] was aggressive and persistent in his approach.”
Holtmann addressed the high expectations that he has walked into at Ohio State, saying the fans “crave” winning.
“This is a proud program that’s used to competing for championships, that’s used to competing in the NCAA tournament. I think one of the reasons you come to a place like this is because you understand that expectations come with it, we’re certainly not going to shy away from that. We understand we have a lot of work ahead of us but I think our guys are excited about that and I’m really excited about that.”
Holtmann also spoke at length about his respect for Thad Matta, the former Butler coach and former OSU head coach.
“I also want to thank Coach Matta. Thad is a friend and his guidance through this process speaks a lot about him. It was important to me that I had his blessing.”
Holtmann told the media he met with the team today and while it won’t happen overnight, he’s excited to get to know the team and he feels like he has a good group.
The former Butler head coach would not reveal who is coming with him from his coaching staff at Butler.