KNOXVILLE -- Tennessee assistant basketball coach Tracy Webster has been promoted to associate head coach.
"This is about the work that Tracy has put in," Tennessee head coach Cuonzo Martin said on Tuesday. "He's a tireless worker, and he's driven to see this program be successful. His efforts to develop our current players, along with his efforts in recruiting, deserve to be rewarded."
Webster works closely with Tennessee's guards, and his player development efforts last season helped the Vols finish second in the Southeastern Conference after initially being projected to finish 11th in the league.
Webster was a three-time All-Big 10 selection during his collegiate playing career at Wisconsin (1992-95). Webster lettered three years for the Badgers and finished his career with 1,264 points and a school-record 501 assists. He was a three-time All-Big Ten selection, including first-team accolades in 1993 when he set Wisconsin's single-season assists record with 179. In 1992, he set the school record for 3-point percentage (.490).
"Tracy Webster was a great point guard," Martin said. "He has a great understanding and a great feel for how to play the game. He's a great teacher for our guards, because he was a really complete basketball player and he has a great mind for the game.â
Before being hired by Martin, Webster spent the 2010-11 season as an assistant at Nebraska. That was immediately preceded by one year at DePaul, during which he was elevated to the position of interim head coach in mid-January.
Webster is no stranger to the Southeastern Conference, having spent two seasons as an assistant on Billy Gillispie's staff at Kentucky. The Wildcats earned postseason bids each year, appearing in the NCAA Tournament in 2008 and reaching the NIT quarterfinals in 2009.
Webster's job in college coaching came at Division III Wisconsin-Parkside in 1998-99. He spent one year there before eventually moving on to Ball State, which advanced to the NIT quarterfinals during his second season on the bench in Muncie, Ind.
Gene Keady then hired Webster at Purdue, where Martin also was on staff. That 2003-04 Boilermakers squad also reached the NIT, giving Webster the second postseason run of his young coaching career.
Postseason success became the norm for Webster during his time as an assistant coach in the Big Ten. He spent three seasons on Bruce Weber's staff at Illinois (2005-07), helping to lead the Fighting Illini to three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. The 2005 squad posted an incredible 37-2 record (tying the NCAA record for wins in a season), advanced to the Final Four and finished as the national runner-up.
That 2005 Illinois team featured five eventual NBA players in James Augustine, Dee Brown, Luther Head, Roger Powell and two-time All-Star Deron Williams.