Just 21 days ago, Kevin Muff was formally introduced as the Pittsburg State basketball coach.



Ever since then, he’s been running.



“I don’t think we’ve really had a chance to stop and rest,” Muff said. “Everything has been challenging, but it has also been really fun to go through.”

Just 21 days ago, Kevin Muff was formally introduced as the Pittsburg State basketball coach.

Ever since then, he’s been running.

“I don’t think we’ve really had a chance to stop and rest,” Muff said. “Everything has been challenging, but it has also been really fun to go through.”

Muff said the process started by watching film of last year’s games to try and identify needs for the upcoming season. Then, the recruiting race kicked off.

“We’re looking at trying to add help at every position,” Muff said. “There are plenty of guards out there. You can find them pretty easily. But forwards and bigs are a little more challenging. We’re looking for players who can come in and compete right away.”

Though no new players have signed with Pitt State as of yet, Muff said recruiting efforts have led to a pair of verbal commitments. While he wouldn’t disclose their positions, he said that both would “fill immediate needs.”

“We’re trying to sell to them the chance to be a part of a new tradition,” Muff said. “It’s a new philosophy, and a chance to be a part of something special. We want to become an MIAA powerhouse, and this is the class that will begin that climb or assent.”

Muff said he was aided by the university, which he said sold itself.

“The people here, and the academic programs, they are as good as it gets,” Muff said.

Recruiting will be a major component of Muff’s turnaround efforts. A former scrappy defender at Kansas State, Muff said he wanted to build a culture of competition where no spot on the roster is promised.

“We want to get better every time we step on the floor,” Muff said. “I want to gauge us on getting better from the beginning to the end.

“I know, from the outside, we will be judged on wins and losses,” Muff said. “But for me personally, it’s a matter of whether we’re doing the job the right way. If we do that, the wins and losses will take care of themselves.”

Muff’s transition has been aided by retired coach Gene Iba, who has helped Muff with returning player evaluations and has been on-hand to answer Muff’s questions.

“He’s allowed me to find my own way,” Muff said. “But he’s been around quite often, and I appreciate his opinion. I’m interested in what he believes it takes to be successful in this league, because he’s done that.”

Muff, who assisted for three seasons at Pittsburg State in the early 1990s, said he was struck by the level of community spirit, from Gorilla flags and license plates to yard ornaments.

“The local support has been fantastic, and people here are so generous,” Muff said. “I’m already looking forward to that first game.”