Madsen hired to restore ‘sleeping huge’ at Cal
BERKELEY, Calif.– Mark Madsen understands the situation he inherited when he was worked with to take control of a California men’s basketball program coming off the worst season in school history.Instead of focusing on
the challenges, Madsen is jumping into the function with the same interest he had diving on the flooring for loose balls as a player.” Having grown up here, I genuinely think that Cal is
a sleeping giant in regards to men’s basketball,”Madsen said at his introductory news conference Monday.” This is a sleeping giant. This is a program that can be a nationally ranked program year in and year out. That’s what I’m thrilled about. “Madsen is faced with a tough task,
taking control of a program that went 3-29 this season, which resulted in the decision to fire coach Mark Fox.Cal went 38-87 throughout Fox’s period, ending his last season on a 16-game losing streak. The Golden Bears have not been to the NCAA Tournament since 2016 and have not won a game in the tournament given that 2013. But Madsen doesn’t see this as a long-lasting job
thanks in part to the chances that include the transfer portal.”If you can bring in three or 4 crucial pieces there, there’s numerous
really excellent players, truly skilled players, “he stated.”There’s a group of actually skilled players already in the program. So now you add 3 or four essential players from the portal. You add some players that are currently in the program from an existing viewpoint, and then you bring in a couple of young guys and you make some tweaks. Good ideas can take place quickly. “It has actually been a whirlwind few weeks for Madsen. He coached Utah Valley to the NIT semifinals last week, talked to and was employed by Cal, and had his 4th kid when his partner, Hannah, delivered Anastasia on Sunday.Madsen minimized the perception that a lack of institutional assistance– no devoted practice center and an apathetic fan base that led to an average presence of 2,155 this season for the lowest mark amongst any group in the Power 5 or Big East– might hinder success at Cal.He focused rather on the opportunities at training Cal, although those acquainted with the program understand it will be a difficulty.”It’s going to be really hard. It’s going to be challenging,”previous Cal star forward Leon Powe stated.
“You come here and it’s not an easy job, but someone’s got to do it. And if any person depends on the job, it’s Mark. He’s really good at motivating individuals and bringing people together.” Madsen dipped into Stanford under Mike Montgomery, who later on coached at Cal, from 1996 to 2000 and helped the Cardinal reach the Last Four in 1998. After a nine-year playing career in the NBA that featured 2 titles as a backup on the Lakers in 2001 and’02, Madsen went into coaching.He spent time in the NBA’s developmental league and a year at Stanford prior to spending 5 seasons on the Lakers’staff.Madsen then was employed in 2019 to
take over Utah Valley. He posted a 70-51 record in 4 years with a 28-9 mark this season and amazed California athletic director Jim Knowlton throughout the search. “He was on our radar weeks prior to the season ended, “Knowlton said.”As we continued to do our research, he increased to the leading faster and faster.
… When we finally got to the Zoom calls, we were absolutely blown away. Then when we got in person and invested 3 or 4 hours with him, we stated,’This is the next coach at Cal.’ “This is a homecoming for Madsen, who matured a half-hour away in Danville and went to college throughout the bay at Stanford, where he had intense battles with
Cal versus players such as Tony Gonzalez and Sean Lampley.Madsen is the third prominent coach to flip sides in the last few years in the Bay Area rivalry in between Cal and Stanford. The Cardinal hired previous Cal quarterback Troy Taylor to take over the football program last season, and Bears females’s basketball coach Charmin Smith played and coached as an assistant at Stanford.While Madsen acknowledged that the very first journey back to Maples Pavilion may be a bit awkward, he’s all aboard at his brand-new school as evidenced by the blue and gold tie he used Monday.”I love my alma mater,”he stated.”I enjoy where I went to school. I love every experience that I had. But my excitement is for Cal. My excitement is for developing this into a champion program. “