Randy Wittman - Washington Wizards Head Coach
With a wealth of NBA coaching experience and basketball knowledge, Randy Wittman is in his fourth season in the Washington Wizards organization and first full season as head coach. Wittman was named head coach of the Wizards on January 24, 2012, and was signed to an extension as Head Coach on June 4, 2012. Following the team’s 2-15 start, Wittman led the Wizards to an 18-31 record, which included a strong finish to the 2011-12 season where the team won eight of their final 10 games (including their last six in a row). During the six-game winning streak to conclude the season, the Wizards held opponents to 84.7 points per game on .399 shooting from the field. In the same stretch, the Wizards averaged 99.2 points per game on .481 shooting from the field. Under Wittman’s leadership, the team’s defensive efforts improved considerably. Washington held opponents to 92.0 points per game on .439 shooting from the field in their last 25 contests to close out the 2011-12 season.
Prior to coming to Washington, Wittman served as head coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves from January 23, 2007 to December 8, 2008. That marked his third stint with the Timberwolves, as he also served as an assistant coach with Minnesota from 1994-1999 and from 2001-2005.
Wittman earned his first NBA head coaching job in Cleveland, where he led the Cavaliers for two seasons from 1999-2001. He began his coaching career as an assistant coach with the Indiana Pacers in 1992, and later worked as an assistant for the Dallas Mavericks and Orlando Magic.
A 1983 graduate of Indiana University, Wittman played collegiately under Bobby Knight, helping the Hoosiers to a NCAA championship in 1981. Wittman’s best season at Indiana came during his senior campaign where he averaged 19.0 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game and was named co-Big 10 Player of the Year. He was originally drafted by the Washington Bullets with the 22nd pick of the 1983 NBA Draft, but was traded to the Atlanta Hawks prior to the start of the 1983-84 season. Wittman played nine seasons in the NBA for Atlanta, Sacramento and Indiana before retiring in 1992 with a career average of 7.4 points per game (.501 FG%) in 543 games. He averaged 10 or more points in three straight seasons from 1985-1988. During the 1985-86 season, Wittman averaged a career-high 12.9 points per game.
Wittman’s numbers increased in the playoffs during his career as he averaged 12.8 points per game in 38 playoff games with the Atlanta Hawks and Indiana Pacers. Wittman averaged 17.8 points per game in nine playoff games for the Hawks during the 1985-86 season and 16.4 points per game in nine playoff games during the 1986-87 season also for the Hawks.
As a two-time academic All-American at Indiana, he was also named the Co-Big Ten Player of the Year as a senior in 1983. Wittman was inducted into the Indiana University Hall of Fame in 1995 and was named to the Indiana Silver Anniversary Basketball Team in March of 1996. In 1997, Wittman was inducted to the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame. A native of Indianapolis, Wittman and his wife, Kathy, have two children, Ryan a former standout for Cornell’s men’s basketball team, and Lauren, a senior at Indiana University.