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OU basketball: Jim Molinari hired as third assistant

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Jim Molinari has been hired as an assistant coach on Lon Kruger's Oklahoma staff, the school announced Thursday. 

Kruger and Molinari were college teammates for one season (1973-74) at Kansas State. Since then, Molinari has held head coaching jobs at Northern Illinois, Bradley, Western Illinois and on an interim basis at Minnesota. 

He went 302-290 as a head coach with two NCAA Tournament appearances. 

Molinari, 64, spent the last five seasons as an assistant at Nebraska under former coach Tim Miles. 

"It is a blessing and privilege to join Coach Kruger,” Molinari said in a release. "I have known him for years as a mentor and group leader on and off the court. I also have high respect and admiration for Chris Crutchfield, Carlin Hartman and Mike Shepherd. I look forward to helping this special group of young men at this outstanding institution achieve their goals as people, students and athletes." 

Crutchfield and Hartman will return to OU for their ninth and fourth seasons as the two other assistants on Kruger's staff. The spot for Molinari came open when Kevin Kruger, Lon Kruger's son, took an assistant coaching job at UNLV. 

"We're thrilled to have Jim join our program as an assistant coach," Kruger said in a release. "He brings terrific experience, a passion for the game and genuine interest for the young people he works with on a daily basis. He does an excellent job of teaching the fundamentals, especially on defense."

Jim Molinari coaching resume

1979-89: DePaul (assistant)

1989-91: Northern Illinois

1991-2002: Bradley

2004-06: Minnesota (assistant)

2006-07: Minnesota (interim head coach)

2007-08: Ball State (assistant) 

2008-14: Western Illinois

2014-19: Nebraska (assistant)

Related Photos
Coach Jim Molinari
MBB vs Wisconsin
Big Ten Tournament Game 2
Nebraska Men's Basketball
Indianapolis, Indiana
Game Date March 10, 2015
Photos by Nate Olsen/NU Communications

Coach Jim Molinari MBB vs Wisconsin Big Ten Tournament Game 2 Nebraska Men's Basketball Indianapolis, Indiana Game Date March 10, 2015 Photos by Nate Olsen/NU Communications

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-757507adc18d8cf5c5fe434aae0190e1.jpg" alt="Photo - Coach Jim Molinari MBB vs Wisconsin Big Ten Tournament Game 2 Nebraska Men's Basketball Indianapolis, Indiana Game Date March 10, 2015 Photos by Nate Olsen/NU Communications" title="Coach Jim Molinari MBB vs Wisconsin Big Ten Tournament Game 2 Nebraska Men's Basketball Indianapolis, Indiana Game Date March 10, 2015 Photos by Nate Olsen/NU Communications"><figcaption>Coach Jim Molinari MBB vs Wisconsin Big Ten Tournament Game 2 Nebraska Men's Basketball Indianapolis, Indiana Game Date March 10, 2015 Photos by Nate Olsen/NU Communications</figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-9a9ceb4abe7d85f0e0110515445d0f3e.jpg" alt="Photo - Oklahoma coach Lon Kruger talks with Oklahoma's Jamal Bieniemy (24), Christian James (0) and Miles Reynolds (3) during a Bedlam basketball game between the Oklahoma State Cowboys (OSU) and the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) at Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater, Okla., Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2019. Oklahoma won70-61. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman" title="Oklahoma coach Lon Kruger talks with Oklahoma's Jamal Bieniemy (24), Christian James (0) and Miles Reynolds (3) during a Bedlam basketball game between the Oklahoma State Cowboys (OSU) and the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) at Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater, Okla., Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2019. Oklahoma won70-61. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman"><figcaption>Oklahoma coach Lon Kruger talks with Oklahoma's Jamal Bieniemy (24), Christian James (0) and Miles Reynolds (3) during a Bedlam basketball game between the Oklahoma State Cowboys (OSU) and the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) at Gallagher-Iba Arena in Stillwater, Okla., Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2019. Oklahoma won70-61. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman</figcaption></figure>
Joe Mussatto

Joe Mussatto joined The Oklahoman in August 2018 to cover OU football, men’s basketball and softball. He previously covered University of Kentucky football and basketball for SEC Country. Mussatto is from Oklahoma City and lives in Norman. Read more ›

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