Emporia State has selected a three-time national champion to direct its men’s basketball program.
ESU on Wednesday hired Graceland University’s Craig Doty to replace Shaun Vandiver, who left last month after seven unsuccessful seasons to become an assistant coach at Wyoming. Doty will be introduced at 2 p.m. Friday in the Sauder Alumni Center on Emporia State’s campus.
Doty, 32, comes to Emporia after recently leading Graceland to the NAIA Division I national championship. Graceland beat Louisiana State-Alexandria 83-80 in overtime on March 20 to cap a 29-10 season that included a 14-5 run through the Heart of America Conference.
“It’s a great honor to be named the head men’s basketball coach at Emporia State University,” Doty said in a university news release. “I want to personally thank athletic director Kent Weiser and his athletic administrators Kristy Bayer and Don Weast. Along with my wife, Alexys, and son, Braylon, we are excited to make the move to Emporia. We look forward to bringing the storied ESU program back to the national spotlight.”
Doty won the NAIA title in only his second season at Graceland. He led the Yellowjackets to a 20-12 record in 2016-17.
“I am incredibly grateful for my two years at Graceland University,” Doty said. “We inherited a program that had never made a national tournament and we won a national championship in our second year.”
Doty coached Rock Valley College to a pair of junior college national titles before moving to Graceland. He went 113-28 during four seasons at Rock Valley, winning NJCAA Division III crowns in 2016 and 2014 and finishing as national runner-up in 2015.
In six seasons as a head coach, Doty is 162-50 overall and 71-31 in conference play.
Doty will inherit an Emporia State team that went 9-19 and 4-15 in the MIAA this past season under Vandiver.
“We are so excited to have coach Craig Doty as our new men’s basketball head coach. He has a track record of success on the national level,” ESU athletic director Kent Weiser said in announcing Doty’s hire. “I’m looking forward to working with him to reinvigorate the Hornet men’s basketball program.”
In seven seasons as the Hornets’ coach, Vandiver amassed a record of 87-112 and had only one winning season, an 18-13 campaign in 2013-14.