Managing Investor– Bill Ilett
President & General Manager – Steve Brandes
Media & Public Relations Coordinator – Ty Carter
Account Executive – Sam Johnson
Account Executive – Victoria Centers
Account Executive – AJ Linze
Account Executive – Isiah Watson
Account Executive - Kyle Little
Dance Team Director – Samantha Buckmier
Broadcast Play-by-Play – Mark Snider
Broadcast Color Commentator – Ross Cook
Financial Controller – Frank Ilett
Head Coach – Dean Cooper
Assistant Coach – Andrae Patterson
Assistant Coach – Travis Walton
Director of Basketball Operations – Hans Steinbrenner
Basketball Operations - Lowell Egan
Athletic Trainer – Brady Howe
Video Coordinator – Ron Weatherly

Business Operations

Steve Brandes
President & General Manager

Steve Brandes enters his thirteenth season with the Stampede Front Office and eighth season as President & General Manager of the Idaho Stampede.

A native of Amherst, Ohio, Brandes enjoys a diverse background ranging from traveling to Russia as a student ambassador to being a professional archaeologist throughout the Midwest for two years. Brandes obtained a liberal arts degree from the College of Wooster. He then attended Game Face, Inc.'s Executive Academy, a leading international sports sales training and placement company in Portland, Oregon. Brandes sold for a plethora of teams during his four months at Game Face. For more information about Game Face Inc.’s Executive Academy log on to

Steve began with the Stampede as an Account Executive and has moved up the ranks serving as Director of Ticket Sales & Game Operations and Assistant General Manager. Through his time at the Stampede, Brandes has helped the team with successful transitions to a new arena and to a new league (CBA to NBA Development League). He also played an integral role in the success of the 2006 CBA All-Star Classic, as well as the 2008 and 2010 NBA Development League Showcase. Brandes helped facilitate the team's hybrid affiliation with the Portland Trail Blazers and serves as a key liaison with the Stampede's NBA parent club.

Steve takes great pride in continuing to build the Stampede’s Community efforts and outreach programs through the Idaho Stampede Community Foundation. He also served on the Epilepsy Foundation of Idaho (EFI) Board and currently serves on the Idaho Non Profit Center's Board.


Ty Carter
Media & Public Relations Coordinator

Ty Carter enters his second season as the Media and Public Relations Coordinator for the Stampede after completing an internship with the team during the 2012-13 season. Some of his responsibilities include working with our community partners in coordinating community outreach events, editing all team publications, and serving as the team’s primary contact for the media.

Originally from San Jose, California, Carter earned his degree in Communications from BYU-Idaho where he also wrote for the university newspaper.

In his free time, Carter enjoys spending time with his family, exploring new places, and following his favorite professional sports teams from the Bay Area. His wife gave birth to their first child in September.

For more information on community visits or for scheduling Rumble the mascot, contact Ty.


Sam Johnson
Account Executive

Sam Johnson enters his second season with the Idaho Stampede as an Account Executive. His responsibilities consist of selling season tickets, group outings, suites and working game day operations.

Sam is originally from Livermore, California. He attended the University of Oregon where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Sports Business. While at the University of Oregon, Sam was an active member in the Warsaw Sports Marketing Club.

Sam’s experience includes interning in Group Sales with the San Jose Sharks of the NHL. While at the Sharks he worked on a spectrum of events including the 2012 Olympic Gymnastics Trials, Disney on Ice, Ringling Bros Circus and Batman Live. He is now very excited to be a part of the Stampede family and is looking forward to a great season.


Victoria Centers
Account Executive

Victoria enters her first season with the Stampede after working for the Columbus Blue Jackets of the NHL. Her responsibilities as an account executive include selling season tickets, corporate sponsorships, mini-plans, group tickets and suites. She also assists the team with ticket and game day operations.

Originally from Ashley Ohio, Victoria received her Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and a Professional Sales Certificate with a specialization in Sports Management from Ohio University (Athens, OH). She spent two seasons as an intern with the Columbus Blue Jackets and one season with the Columbus Crew of the MLS.

In her spare time, Victoria enjoys shopping, attending sporting events, volunteering and exploring the beautiful state of Idaho.


AJ Linze
Account Executive

AJ enters her first season with the Idaho Stampede as an Account Executive. Her responsibilities include selling season tickets, group outings, suites and coordinating ticket services.

AJ is originally from Parma, Idaho. She attended Boise State University where she earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. While at Boise State, she volunteered her time and services in assisting with many political campaigns. After college, AJ spent over four years in internet sales. She brings that sales experience and local connections to the Stampede front office.

She is an avid golfer and huge sports fan. She spends her free time with friends and family, and her dog Harlow. She is very excited to be a part of her first season with the Stampede and looks forward to building relationships with the local community.


Isiah Watson
Account Executive

Isiah is in his first season as an Account Executive with the Idaho Stampede. He enjoys working with people and helping businesses come up with creative ways to market their companies with the Stampede. He also sells season tickets and group outings for local organizations. Contact him with any ticketing requests you may have!

A native of Long Beach, California, Isiah played football on scholarship at Southern Oregon University. He also earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications.

Isiah most recently worked as a sales intern with the Los Angeles Sparks of the WNBA. He enjoys reading, playing the piano and playing sports in his free time.


Samantha Buckmier
Director, Stampede Spirit Dance Team

"Sam" is entering her first season as Director of the Stampede Spirit Dance Team for the 2014-15 season. Born in Portland, OR; Sam attended Western Oregon University earning her BS in Forensic Chemistry with a minor in Dance studying ballet, jazz, hip-hop, modern and aerial dance. Last season she danced for Off Center Dance Company and the Idaho Stampede.

She has traveled the world including Mexico and China dancing with Rainbow Dance Theatre for 5 years, was an apprentice with A-Wol aerial dance company for 2 years, and danced for Subrosa Dance Collectives and Pure Dance Company for one year in Portland. She continues to teach at Thunderbird Dance Camp every summer for the last nine years teaching over sixteen hundred middle and high school students each year.

Sam enjoys spending time with her husband, her 2 dogs and her dance peers.

To learn more about joining the Stampede Spirit Dance Team or to participate in a local youth dance clinic with your Stampede Spirit please email

Basketball Operations

Dean Cooper
Head Coach

Dean Cooper enters his first season as the head basketball coach for the Idaho Stampede. Cooper spent the past two seasons as an assistant coach for the Houston Rockets on Kevin McHale’s staff. He began his NBA career with the Rockets in 1999 as a video coordinator, eventually becoming an assistant coach to Rudy Tomjanovich. When Jeff Van Gundy succeeded Tomjanovich, Cooper transitioned to the front office as a personnel scout for one season before eventually becoming the Director of Scouting (2004-07) and Vice President of Player Personnel (2007-08).

He spent the 2008-09 season as an assistant coach for the Minnesota Timberwolves when McHale was the interim coach. Following a one-year stint as a regional scout for the Timberwolves (2009-10), Cooper became Director of Player Development for the Portland Trail Blazers under Nate McMillan.

Prior to the NBA, Cooper coached four years at the collegiate level. For two seasons he was an assistant coach at his alma mater, Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Mich. before taking a similar role at the University of Buffalo for two years. While at Aquinas, he served in an advance scouting role for the Connecticut Pride of the Continental Basketball Association (CBA) for one season. Cooper began his coaching career at a pair of Michigan high schools, spending five years at Belding High School and three years at Caledonia High School.

A native of Belding, Mich., Cooper has been a camp director in the NBA’s Basketball without Borders program since 2005. Married to Melanie Cooper, he earned his undergraduate degree in business administration from Aquinas College.

Andrae Patterson
Assistant Coach

Patterson arrives in Boise with domestic and international playing and coaching experience, most recently spending two seasons as an assistant coach at the University of Texas at Arlington after two years as the school’s director of basketball operations/video coordinator and one as a student assistant. Prior to joining UT Arlington, Patterson enjoyed a successful professional playing career that began when he was selected by the Minnesota Timberwolves with the 46th overall pick of the 1998 NBA Draft, where he played from 1998-2001. Following his NBA career, he played nine seasons internationally for clubs in the top European leagues, including both CB Estudiantes (2001-05) and Bàsquet Manresa (2005-06) of the premier Spanish ACB League, as well as KK Zadar (Croatia-A1) and Panellinios BC (Greece-A1) in 2006, Ironi Ashkelon (Israel) in 2007, before finishing his playing career with Egaleo AO (Greece-A1) from 2007-09.

As a collegian, the native of Abilene, Texas, played for Hall of Fame coach Bob Knight for four seasons at Indiana University (1994-98), where he was an All-American and four-time All-Big Ten selection and led the Hoosiers to four NCAA Tournament appearances while earning a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.

Travis Walton
Assistant Coach

Walton brings NBA Development League experience, having played from 2011-12 for the Dakota Wizards, Fort Wayne Mad Ants as well as the Canton Charge, under then Charge head coach and current Jazz assistant Alex Jensen. Walton also played professionally for ratiopharm Ulm (Germany-1) from 2010-11 and Lugano Tigers (Switzerland) from 2009-10 following a four-year standout career playing for head coach Tom Izzo at Michigan State (2005-09).

One of three three-year captains in Michigan State history, Walton finished his collegiate career as the Spartans all-time leader in games played (143), and ranking fourth in school history for steals (167) and sixth in assists (555). Selected as the Big Ten’s Defensive Player of the Year his senior year, Walton led the Spartans to the NCAA Tournament all four seasons, including being selected to the NCAA Tournament Midwest Regional All-Tournament Team en route to the Final Four and appearance in the 2009 National Championship Game.

Walton served as a student assistant coach at Michigan State for the 2009-10 season while completing his bachelor’s degree in family child ecology, and has run his own basketball skill development and motivational speaking company, Team Walton, since 2012.

Hans Steinbrenner
Director of Basketball Operations

Hans Steinbrenner enters his first season as Director of Basketball Operations for the Idaho Stampede. He assists the team’s President & General Manger with various day-to-day responsibilities, while continuing to work closely with the Coaching Staff. He is an integral part of the team’s basketball operations & logistics while working in tandem with the Head Athletic Trainer and serves as one of the team’s basketball operations liaisons with the Utah Jazz as needed.

The Boise native and Centennial High School alum graduated from the University of Utah earning his Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics with an emphasis in Statistics. While at the University of Utah, Hans worked four seasons as student manager for the Utes’ Men’s Basketball program, with three of them under former Stampede head coach and current Ute Head Coach, Larry Krystkowiak.

In his spare time; Hans enjoys everything basketball, watching his Runnin’ Utes, and spending time with his friends and family.