Cougars Name Steve Yoder Director of Operations

April 9, 2014

HOUSTON – Former Ball State and Wisconsin head coach Steve Yoder has joined University of Houston Men’s Basketball head coach Kelvin Sampson’s staff as director of operations.

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In that role, Yoder will coordinate scheduling and will work as a liaison to visiting teams and Athletics Department staff. In addition, he assists with on-campus recruiting, manages correspondence and relations with alumni and donors, supervises student managers and helps with game-day responsibilities.


“Steve has been around and worked in the Big Ten and in the NBA. Through the years, we have had conversations about the game of basketball and how we can make our teams better,” head coach Kelvin Sampson said. “When this job came open, I wanted someone that could handle the day-to-day operations of our program. I have known Steve for a long time, and I know what kind of person he is and the character and integrity that he has. He will be a great fit for us.”


Most recently, Yoder spent 11 years as a scout in the NBA. He worked from 2003 to 2011 with the New Yorks Knicks and served in a similar role from 2000 to 2003 with the Indiana Pacers.


After leaving the coaching ranks in 1992, Yoder worked as a television analyst with Raycom and ESPN from 1993 to 1999.

Yoder, who is a Plymouth, Ind., native, served as the head coach at Wisconsin from 1982 to 1992. In 10 seasons with the Badgers, he compiled 128 wins and led the program to NIT appearances in 1991 and 1989. His first NIT berth marked Wisconsin’s first postseason berth in more than 40 years.


Leading the 1988-89 team to an 18-12 record and the NIT Second Round, Yoder was named Kodak District XI Coach of the Year by the National Association of Basketball Coaches as well as the Midwest Coach of the Year by Basketball Times.


Before his Wisconsin tenure, Yoder worked as a head coach at Ball State from 1977 to 1982. There, he compiled a 77-62 overall record and led the Cardinals to the 1981 NCAA Tournament.


He guided Ball State to a share of the 1981 Mid-American Conference regular-season title and advanced to the NCAA Tournament with a win in the MAC Tournament championship game.


One year later, Yoder led Ball State to a 12-4 conference record and the outright championship before bowing out to Northern Illinois in overtime in the MAC Tournament championship game.


Yoder entered the coaching ranks at Glen Ellyn (Ill.) Junior High and became an assistant coach at Plymouth (Ind.) High in 1965. Becoming Plymouth High head coach in 1967, he led the team to three conference championships, three sectional titles, a pair of regional crowns and two finishes  among the top-10 teams in the state rankings during a six-year period.


After being named Indiana’s District One Coach of the Year in 1973, he accepted a job as an assistant coach at Furman. He returned to Indiana as head coach at Mishawaka’s Penn High School. He served as an assistant coach at Ball State in 1976 before becoming head coach of the Cardinals one year later.


Yoder received his bachelor’s degree in liberal arts from Illinois Wesleyan in 1962 and earned his master’s degree in education from Saint Francis in 1970.

He and his wife, Marcia, have four children: sons Mike and Dan, daughters Wendy and Amy, four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.


Full Name:          Stephen Kent Yoder

Hometown:       Plymouth, Ind.

Birthdate:          Nov. 1, 1939



• Saint Francis • master’s degree in education • 1970

• Illinois Wesleyan • bachelor’s degree in liberal arts • 1962

• Plymouth High School • 1958



Wife: The former Marcia Rich

Children: Sons Mike and Dan, daughters Wendy and Amy

Grandchildren: Jesse Yoder, Amanda Scarborough, Madison Yoder and Sara Stanhope

Great-grandchildren: Ethan Craig and Ryley Byrd



2014 –              Houston                                                      director of operations

2003-11          New York Knicks                                  scout

2000-03          Indiana Pacers                                        scout

1993-99          Raycom, ESPN                                         television analyst

1982–92         Wisconsin                                                  head coach

1977-82          Ball State                                                     head coach

1976-77          Ball State                                                     assistant coach

1975-76          Penn High                                                   head coach

1973-75          Furman                                                        assistant coach

1967-73          Plymouth (Ind.) High                         head coach

1964-67          Plymouth (Ind.) High                         assistant coach

1962-64          Glen Ellyn (Ill.) Junior High            coach



1958-62          Illinois Wesleyan

                              • Four-year letterman in baseball and two-year letterman in basketball



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