Arizona Basketball

Pacific Extends Contract of Arizona Wildcats Legend Damon Stoudamire as Head Coach Through 2025-26 Season

Pacific announced a contract extension for head men’s basketball coach Damon Stoudamire, a legendary Arizona basketball player and former assistant coach, through the 2025-26 season.

Stoudamire, who is entering his fifth season as head coach, is coming off of one of the most successful seasons in Pacific history, which included being named the 2019-20 West Coast Conference Coach of the Year.

“I am excited to know I’ll be in Stockton (Calif.) for another six years,” Stoudamire said in a statement. “I want to thank the Pacific administration for giving me my first head coaching opportunity. Things like this happen when you work with good people and my staff has been a big part of our success … I look forward to continuing to develop young men in not only the game of basketball, but life as well.”

Finishing with a 23-10 overall record, the Tigers placed tied for third with Saint Mary’s in the final WCC regular season standings in 2019-20, earning a top four seed in the conference tournament for the first time since rejoining the WCC in 2013. The 23 wins also marked the highest total in the Stoudamire era as the former NBA veteran guided the Tigers to their best finish since 2013-14, when the Tigers earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament.

Stoudamire directed a defense that led the conference and ranked No. 42 nationally in scoring defense (64.3 points allowed per game) last season.

He coached Jahlil Tripp to a spot on the All-WCC First Team, helping the senior earn WCC Defensive Player of the Year honors as well as being selected to the NABC District 9 Second Team. Stoudamire also helped Daniss Jenkins land the program’s first All-WCC Freshman Team honor. 

Stoudamire was also honored as the Ben Jobe National Coach of the Year last season. The award is given annually to the top minority coach at the Division I level.

He also led the Tigers to their first win at San Francisco since 2007 and set two team milestones against Portland, recording season wins number 15 (for the first time in the Stoudamire era) and 20 on the season to cement the program’s first 20-win season since 2012-13.

The Tigers beat Saint Mary’s in Stockton for the first time since 1997 in January.

Two players under Stoudamire have been named conference Defensive Player of the Year — Namdi Okonkwo (2017-18) and Tripp (2019-20).

Stoudamire’s nomination as WCC Coach of the Year in 2019-20 also marked the first time a Tiger head coach has won the award since Dick Edwards won his third in 1970-71.

Pacific has also seen at least one student-athlete be named to a WCC All-Conference team in each season with Stoudamire as head coach. Overall, eight Tigers have collected honors from the WCC under Stoudamire, ranging from Honorable Mention to First-Team All-Conference.

In the classroom, Stoudamire has pushed the Tigers to new heights as well, as 12 of the 13 seniors during his tenure have graduated from Pacific. Additionally, the 2019-20 men’s basketball team recently recorded the program’s highest cumulative GPA in 10 years for an overall academic year, notching a 2.85 cumulative GPA over the fall and spring semesters.

FOLLOW @JAVIERJMORALES ON TWITTER! publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports,, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.

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