College - Kentucky
Frank Vogel was named head coach of the Pacers, July 6, 2011, after serving as head coach the last 38 games of the 2010-11 season. He is currently the second-youngest head coach in the National Basketball Association at the age of 38, a result of perseverance, hard work and dedication to the sport.
Vogel took over for Jim O’Brien, Jan. 30, 2011, and guided the Pacers to a 20-18 record and their first playoff berth in four seasons. In the first round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs against the Chicago Bulls, who had the NBA’s best regular season record, the Pacers lost the best-seven series, 4-1, but the Pacers left their mark in the highly-competitive series.
“We’re very happy to have Frank as our coach,” said Pacers President of Basketball Operations Larry Bird. "I had numerous talks with Frank and the things he wants to do and along with his staff (associate head coach Brian Shaw, assistant coaches Dan Burke and Jim Boylen), I feel very comfortable we’re moving in the right direction.”
“I’m very grateful to (team owner) Herb Simon, Larry Bird and (general manager) David Morway for giving me this opportunity,” said Vogel. "This is a challenge I embrace and look forward to. Our team last year finished strong with a positive playoff showing and it’s something we all can definitely build on. We took a huge step as a team, as a franchise, and it was a big step, but we’re not satisfied with that by any stretch.”
Vogel, who is entering his 15th NBA season (eight as an assistant coach), got his start in the NBA as the head video coordinator with the Boston Celtics under Rick Pitino. He served in that role from 1997-2001 before becoming an assistant coach with the Celtics under O’Brien, following O’Brien as an assistant in Philadelphia and in 2007 with the Pacers. Vogel spent two seasons as an advance scout for the Los Angeles Lakers (2005-06) and Washington Wizards (2006-07).
Vogel is a graduate of the University of Kentucky with a degree in biology and became the Wildcats video coordinator after graduation. He attended Juniata College in Huntington, Pa., where he was a three-year starter for the Division III Eagles. He then transferred to Kentucky, became a student manager and played on the junior varsity team in 1996. While at Juniata, he made a decision that changed his life. An admirer of Pitino, who was the coach at Kentucky, Frank wanted to learn about coaching from Pitino. He made numerous requests to get to Kentucky as a walk-on, a student manager, anything. He finally got through to Jim O'Brien, as assistant to Pitino, who saw to it that Frank became a student manager, even though the Wildcats preferred in-state students for that job.
Frank was also a member of the junior varsity that year and his work ethic landed him the job as Kentucky's video coordinator after graduation. Pitino left Kentucky for the head coach's position with the Boston Celtics and took Frank with him as the head video coordinator. He had that role until Pitino left and O'Brien became the head coach of the Celtics, naming Frank as an assistant.
As a youth, Vogel attended basketball camps and encountered an instructor who taught him if he believed in something and put his mind to it, he could accomplish anything. The instructor used spinning a basketball on his finger as an example and then spun it on a toothbrush. Frank practiced and practiced the same trick until he, too, accomplished it and brushed his teeth with the toothbrush while spinning the basketball on the end of it. That skill earned him, as a 13-year-old, a national television appearance on "Late Night With David Letterman" in the Stupid Human Tricks segment. It was forbearer of the perseverance that has made Frank one of the rising young stars in coaching.
Frank and his wife, Jenifer, have two daughters, Alexa and Arianna. An avid Philadelphia Phillies and Eagles’ fan, his hobbies include spending time with his children, golf, movies and backyard barbeques