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Filed under Sports, Spring 2019

UIS Names Matt Brock As New Men’s Basketball Head Coach

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UIS Names Matt Brock As New Men’s Basketball Head Coach

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The University of Illinois Springfield Athletics Department announced today that Matt Brock is the new Prairie Stars men’s basketball head coach. Brock comes to UIS from Missouri Baptist, where he led the Spartans to a major turnaround in his four seasons in St. Louis.

“It’s an honor and a blessing to be joining the University of Illinois Springfield family and the Springfield community,” said Brock. “We are excited for the future of UIS basketball and ready to work hard with young men who will represent our program in a first-class manner. I am grateful to Chancellor Koch and Jim Sarra for the opportunity, and their vision of excellence for UIS athletics.”

“When I talked to people about the job opening at UIS, Matt Brock was the one name that kept coming up,” said Director of Athletics Jim Sarra. “In order to win a championship in the GLVC, you have to have one of the top defenses in the league, and Matt has a proven track record in building great defenses. He has also built his program with players with high academic achievements and good character in the community. I am excited to welcome Matt and his family to the Prairie Stars family.”

Brock has been the head coach at Missouri Baptist since 2015, and he had a four-year record of 87-40. He took over a program that won just seven games in each of the previous two seasons, and led the Spartans to a 12-win improvement in his first season on the bench. After finishing above .500 in his second season, Missouri Baptist had back-to-back 20- win seasons in 2017-18 and 2018-19.

Last year, Brock led Missouri Baptist to its best season in program history. The Spartans finished the year with a 28-5 overall record, and it won the American Midwest Conference regular season title with a 19-3 mark. They reached the NAIA National Tournament for the first time in 14 years, and set school records for wins and the highest national ranking with a No. 3 mark during the year.

Brock built his success at Missouri Baptist on the defensive side of the ball. The Spartans ranked in the top- 20 in the NAIA in each of his four seasons in scoring defense, and they improved each year. Missouri Baptist also ranked in the top-20 each year, including the top- 10 in three seasons, in field-goal percentage defense. Last year, Missouri Baptist led the nation by allowing 60.7 points a game and a .378 field-goal percentage defense, and it was third with a .303 three-point field-goal percentage defense.

Brock’s players have earned six All-American honors and 11 all-conference awards in four seasons. Last year, he coached the AMC Player of the Year, and Brock was named the conference Coach of the Year. Academically, Missouri Baptist has won the NABC Academic Excellence Award and the NAIA Scholar-Team Award in each of Brock’s seasons. In the fall 2018 semester, the basketball team set a program record with a 3.35 GPA.

Prior to coaching at Missouri Baptist, Brock was the associate head coach at Columbia College from 2012- 2015. While he was at Columbia, the Cougars went 93-11, won two AMC regular season titles, two AMC postseason tournament titles, and advanced to three national tournaments. The 2012-13 team went 30-0 in the regular season and was ranked first in the NAIA National poll. Columbia led the nation in scoring defense in two of those seasons.

Brock has NCAA Division II coaching experience when he was at Pittsburg State from 2008-2012. The Gorillas improved by four wins in each of Brock’s final two seasons in Pittsburg, and they reached the MIAA Tournament Championship game in 2012.

Brock was also an assistant coach at Hannibal-LaGrange in 2007-2008, and was the head coach at Green City High School in 2006-07. His Hannibal-LaGrange squad picked up the most wins in eight seasons, and his Green City team won 20 games, and was the conference and district runner-up.

Brock played NCAA Division II basketball for four years at Truman State University. He appeared in 97 games throughout his career with the Bulldogs. He was a three-point specialist with 88 made three-pointers in his career. Brock was the team captain his senior year, and helped Truman State to 20 wins, an improvement of 12 over the previous season, and a berth in the NCAA Division II National Tournament.

Brock graduated from Truman State in 2005 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science. He earned his Master of Arts in Education from Truman State in 2007.

Brock is originally from Camdenton, Mo., where he played high school basketball for his father, Skip, a member of the Missouri Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame. Brock and his wife, Sheryl, have two children, Hope and Matthew.

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UIS Names Matt Brock As New Men’s Basketball Head Coach