Who is Fred Hoiberg? A timeline of The Mayor's career


Who is Fred Hoiberg? A timeline of The Mayor's career

Fred Hoiberg was announced Tuesday afternoon as the 19th head coach of the Bulls.

Here's a timeline of Hoiberg's basketball career, from a high school star in Ames, Iowa, to the NBA to the front office and back to Ames before finally arriving in the Windy City.

1991: Hoiberg, who would later be honored as Mr. Basketball in Iowa, leads Ames High School to a 1991 state championship, averaging 38.1 points per game in six tournament games. He was also named the Gatorade State Player of the Year in football, playing quarterback for the Little Cyclones. He received a football scholarship offer from Nebraska, but wound up turning it down to play basketball at hometown Iowa State. He also had basketball scholarship offers from Arizona and Stanford, among others. Hoiberg's family had moved to Ames when Fred was 2 years old, and he spent time with the Iowa State basketball team as the ball boy in grade school, falling in love with the town and program he would one day play for and coach.

[MORE BULLS: Bulls announce Fred Hoiberg as new head coach]

1992-1995: Hoiberg finishes his Iowa State basketball career with 1,993 points, third most in program history. He was named the 1992 Big Eight Freshman of the Year, earned second team All-Big Eight honors as a junior and first team All-Big Eight honors as a senior. He was also a third team All-American in his final season with the Cyclones, when he averaged 19.9 points (third best in the conference). Hoiberg was so popular in the town, school and basketball program that his teammates nicknamed him "The Mayor." He even received a few write-in votes in the 1993 mayoral election in Ames. His senior season he played for head coach Tim Floyd and assistant Gar Forman, who 15 years later would become the Bulls' general manager.

1995-1999: Hoiberg is selected No. 52 overall by the Indiana Pacers. In 139 games, he averages 3.9 points in 11.6 minutes per game.

1999-2003: Hoiberg signs as a free agent with the Bulls, then coached by Floyd. In his first season with the Bulls he averaged 9.0 points, 2.7 assists and 1.3 steals per game in a career-high 27.3 minutes per game. He followed that up with his best year as a professional in 2000-01, averaging 9.1 points, 3.6 assists and 1.3 steals in 30.4 minutes per game. Floyd resigned early in the 2001 season, and Hoiberg fell out of the rotation in his final two seasons with the Bulls under Bill Cartwright, averaging just 3.4 points in 15.4 minutes per game.

[MORE BULLS: Goff and Greenberg on the Bulls hiring of Hoiberg]

2003-05: Hoiberg finds a resurgence in his final two seasons with the Timberwolves, averaging 6.2 points on better than 46 percent shooting from beyond the arc in 155 games. In his final NBA season, he led the league in 3-point shooting (48.3 percent) and shot a career-best 48.9 percent from the field. In 10 NBA seasons, he averaged 5.4 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 541 games, including 61 starts. During his time in the league, he played under some of the best coaches in the game, including Larry Brown, Larry Bird and Kevin McHale.

2005: A health screening uncovers an enlarged aortic root in his heart, requiring open-heart surgery and a pacemaker. After a summer of recovery, Hoiberg considers returning to the NBA with the run-n-gun Phoenix Suns under Mike D'Antoni. And though doctors told him there was little to no risk in returning to the NBA while using a pacemaker, Hoiberg - a father of two with his high school sweetheart, Carol - ultimately turns down the offer.

2006: With his playing days behind him, Hoiberg accepts a front office job with the Timberwolves as an assistant general manager. In his four seasons with Minnesota - he was promoted to vice president of basketball operations in 2009 - the Timberwolves acquired Kevin Love, Nikola Pekovic and Ricky Rubio through the draft.

[NBC SHOP: Gear up, Bulls fans!]

2010: Hoiberg returns home, accepting a position as head coach of the Iowa State Cyclones. He takes over a program that hadn't had a winning season in-conference since 2005, and hadn't been to the NCAA Tournament since 2001. He goes 16-16 in his first season, followed by 46 wins the next two seasons. In 2013-14, the Cyclones went 28-8, earning an NCAA Tournament berth (and an eventual Sweet 16 appearance) and a Big 12 Conference Tournament championship. The Cyclones repeat the following season, this past year, going 25-8 and earning another NCAA Tournament appearance and Big 12 Conference Tournament championship. They're stunned in the NCAA Tournament, falling to 15th-seeded UAB in what would be Hoiberg's final game with the Cyclones.

2015: Hoiberg is officially hired as the 19th head coach in Bulls franchise history.

The next preps-to-pros leaper, Anfernee Simons confident 'I'll be able to make this jump'


The next preps-to-pros leaper, Anfernee Simons confident 'I'll be able to make this jump'

Anfernee Simons looks more like a ball boy than a 2018 NBA Draft prospect right now. He’s not considered small, what with having a 6-foot-3 frame with a massive 6-foot-9 wingspan, and he weighed in at last week’s NBA Draft Combine at 183 pounds, “heavier” than Lottery-bound guards like Trae Young, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Collin Sexton.

But there’s plenty of potential to unpack from the soon-to-be 19-year-old, baby-faced combo guard. Don’t let the appearance fool you. Simons is one of the most talented players in the class, and a team patient enough to let him develop at his own pace could reap major benefits in due time.

You won’t find much video on Simons, as the IMG Academy star is preparing to be the first prospect to go preps-to-pros without a year in college since Thon Maker did so in 2016.

Simons, a consensus five-star recruit in the 2018 class, originally committed to Louisville in November 2016 and then decommitted the following September shortly after Rick Pitino was fired. Since he had graduated from Edgewater High School in Florida and was playing a post-grad year at IMG Academy, he became eligible for the 2018 NBA Draft because he is a year removed from high school. That’s where he played this past season, declaring for the draft and signing with an agent in late March.

“The opportunity is there. Me and my parents talked about it a lot and I feel like I’m confident in myself that I’ll be able to make this jump,” he said at last week’s Combine. “So I just felt like, do it now and not waste any time.”

Simons has been on the radars of NBA teams, even if he’s not a household name like Ayton, Doncic and Bagley. He’s currently projected outside of the Lottery, in part because teams haven’t seen him compete against collegiate level talent and because his wiry frame almost surely means time in the G-League as a rookie. But again, the skill set is there.

Simons is a point guard with solid range beyond the arc. He may struggle off the ball because of his size, though that long wingspan and a quick release from his chest should allow him to get off shots. He’s a blur in transition and finishes well at the rim – his 41.5-inch vertical was tied for third best at the Combine, and his three-quarters court sprint was eighth fastest.

He’s a mixed bag defensively. Wingspan is the fun buzz word these days, and that will help him at the next level, but his small frame means there’s work to be done. A strength and conditioning coach will salivate at bringing Simons into the weight room and getting his body NBA-ready.

“Just staying durable through 82 games,” Simons answered when asked about his biggest challenge physically at the next level. “Taking care of your body is real pivotal so I feel like learning how to take care of my body now is a good thing.”

Simons maturely answered that the “unknown” of his game will be both a positive and minus during the pre-draft process. While fellow prospects he may face in team workouts don’t know as much about him and, thus, his game, teams also need to find out more about Simons’ game and off-court habits.

“Coming in young, people don’t know who I am and haven’t seen me play much. That’s the good side about coming in early,” he said. “It could be the same thing (negatively). People haven’t seen me like that, so I feel like they don’t know who I am. They probably think I’m too young to play in the league.”

Simons met with the Bulls and has scheduled a pre-draft workout with them. Though the Bulls feel like their rebuild could go quicker than anticipated – especially if they hit on their No. 7 pick – there could be plenty to gain from drafting for upside on a player like Simons.

Jerian Grant and Cameron Payne will both be free agents in 2019, and Denzel Valentine’s long-term future isn’t set in stone in Chicago. That leaves plenty of openings in the backcourt behind Kris Dunn and Zach LaVine. Simons won’t be ready to contribute much in 2018-19, but the Bulls wouldn’t need him to. A handful of outlets projected Simons as a top-5 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. The Bulls could snag him a year earlier, let him develop in Hoffman Estates and bring him up in a year when they’re a step closer to contending.

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Should Bulls use Lauri Markkanen as centerpiece of a trade to bring in a superstar?


SportsTalk Live Podcast: Should Bulls use Lauri Markkanen as centerpiece of a trade to bring in a superstar?

On this episode of SportsTalk Live, Hub Arkush (670 The Score/Pro Football Weekly), Danny Parkins (670 The Score) and Lauren Comitor (The Athletic) join David Kaplan on the panel.

Manny Machado Mania continues in Chicago. Do the Cubs even need to trade for him to win the World Series this year?

Ricky Renteria has to bench another player for not hustling. Is this becoming a problem on the South Side?

Plus, Lauri Markkanen is named to the All-Rookie team. Could he be the centerpiece of a trade if the Bulls want to acquire a superstar or move up in the draft? 

Listen to the full episode at this link or in the embedded player below: