Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Twitter – @CoachBartLundy
Bart Lundy will be entering his first season as the Men’s Basketball Head Coach at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in the fall of 2022.
Lundy comes to UWM after a very successful nine-year run at Queens University in Charlotte, North Carolina, posting a 30-4 record during the recently-completed 2021-22 campaign. He took his program to the NCAA Tournament for the seventh year in a row this past season, advancing all the way to the Southeast Regional Championship game. Lundy is the winningest coach in Queens basketball history, posting a record of 333-103 (.764 win pct.) and a career coaching record of 429-190 (.693) in his 20 seasons as a head coach in NCAA Division I and Division II.
Lundy has also done an impressive job developing players, with 24 former Queens players having played professionally over the past nine seasons, highlighted by four NBA G-League players as well as Todd Withers, who signed a contract with the Detroit Pistons in the National Basketball Association following the NBA Summer League slate in 2019.
In addition to success on the court, he has graduated every player to exhaust their eligibility since 2016 and seen his program post a team GPA over 3.0 each of the past four years.
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Have your notebook handy as you listen to this episode with Bart Lundy, Head Men’s Basketball Coach at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
What We Discuss with Bart Lundy
- How quickly the opportunity at Wisconsin Milwaukee materialized following his final NCAA Tournament game with Queens this past season
- Why the timing and location felt right to take the job at UWM
- His lack of prep time for the first interview
- Why UWM wasn’t necessarily looking for a D1 Head Coach after their success with Bo Ryan and Bruce Pearl
- The conversations with his family prior to accepting the job
- His former assistant Grant Leonard getting the job at Queens and how that happened
- Making sure his staff at Queens all found positions for next season
- His final conversation with his players at Queens
- Advice he got about getting a second phone after taking the UWM job to deal with all the incoming advice
- Evaluating the roster and hiring his new staff
- Conducting 30 interviews at the Final Four
- The need for local Milwaukee connections on his staff
- “At this point in my career, significance to me is helping our players get better and reach their goals, but also the staff. I want to see them develop and fill in the gaps and be head coaches at some point.”
- “We’re going to play fast. We’re going to shoot a lot of threes. We’re going to pick up 94 feet defensively.”
- “When I evaluated the job, it had no gaps. There were no reasons that you couldn’t succeed.”
- The facilities at UWM, including a brand new practice facility and the Mecca
- The need to coach his coaches and get everyone on the same page
- “I think the summertime, even though the rules have changed and you can do more as a team it’s still a time for guys to develop and get better.”
- Managing NIL and the Transfer Portal
- “You have to create a culture where they feel like they’re part of something bigger than themselves.”
- Why he staggered the onboarding of his staff
- Developing a shared language
- The community support for the program in Milwaukee
- “We’re good coaches, but we’re only as good as those players. Getting the right players and the right fits for the system.”
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THANKS, BART LUNDY
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TRANSCRIPT FOR BART LUNDY – UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN-MILWAUKEE MEN’S BASKETBALL HEAD COACH – EPISODE 637
[00:00:00] Mike Klinzing: Hello and welcome to the Hoop Heads Podcast. It’s Mike Klinzing here without my co-host Jason Sunkle this morning, but I am pleased to be joined by the new head coach at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Bart Lundy. His second tour on the Hoop Heads Pod, Bart Lundy. Bart. Welcome back.
[00:00:14] Bart Lundy: Thanks Mike. Thanks for having me.
[00:00:15] Mike Klinzing: First of all. Yes, absolutely. Congratulations on the new job. Let’s start by just talking about how this opportunity. Came across your desk. What’s the thought process when the job comes open, just tell us a little bit about how you got the process.
[00:00:32] Bart Lundy: Yeah, it’s one of those things where I wasn’t really looking for a job.
And I literally funny story. I was looking at my phone and we all have the notifications that pop up on our phone. I don’t know what it was, whatever popped up that the former coach had been let go. And as I’m looking at that notification, my phone rings, it’s a search firm. I was quickly on the phone with them and still wasn’t sure how it felt about leaving Queens coming to Milwaukee. And but she, she really sold me on the vision and I’d been in Milwaukee before at Marquette and they’re opening a new practice facility. We finished our season and flew up and one thing led to another.
It was kind of fast and furious.
[00:01:25] Mike Klinzing: How much of that previous experience in Milwaukee for both you and your family? Played a part in how quickly you were able to think about? Yeah, maybe this is something that’s a great opportunity. If it had been another city in the Midwest, maybe that you hadn’t had as much familiarity with how much of it was that familiarity with Milwaukee?
[00:01:47] Bart Lundy: It was it was a large part. I’m remarried. My wife I met when I was at Marquette and she literally lived three blocks from. UWM. So you know, we knew the schools, we knew the area. So there have been other opportunities that we weren’t as familiar with.
And the timing of this and the location both played a huge role.
[00:02:14] Mike Klinzing: When you are going through the process and you get that initial call from the AD, take us through the interview process. How many interviews do you have? What’s the first conversation like, and just to how you went about preparing yourself for that interview process?
[00:02:31] Bart Lundy: Yeah. You’re going to be astounded at this. So the very first conversation, which I expected it to be. You know, sort of an interview with the athletic director, Amanda Bron was more just, she already knew she had already listened to podcasts. She had already watched games. She already knew all about me.
So it was, it was far different than anything I had experienced before. Which made me more interested in the job to be honest. And then we were still playing. So we lose on I don’t remember what day it was a Tuesday night in the regional finals, a buzzer beater in Augusta, Georgia.
I get back at say two o’clock in the morning. Well, they had bought a flight that night. I flew up, I got on a plane at 6:00 AM, so I was exhausted. So no prep, no nothing. They, they put me downtown Milwaukee that they didn’t want to bring anybody on campus. So we did the interview in a really nice hotel called the Pfister.
The only time I went to campus was to meet the AD. So it was fast day then they let me go. You know, after dinner time and I flew out the next morning but literally on about two hours of sleep and no prep. So I’d like to tell you that I did all my research. I always say that two things could have derailed this pretty quickly.
One if they don’t make that shot and beat us I got here, I got off the plane and it was like 65 degrees. And that was the first day the weather had broken. But coming from Charlotte, if I’d gotten off and been snowing, probably would’ve got back on the plane.
[00:04:21] Mike Klinzing: How difficult was it to lose that game to Augusta and then sort of shift your mentality away from what you had put into obviously that season and sort of think about, okay, how does this next opportunity fit into my life? My career plan is kind of where I’m at. How difficult was that to sort of change gears within the course of three hours of sleep or whatever you got that night?
[00:04:46] Bart Lundy: We’ll probably having the three hours of sleep, help me because.
No at that point, I was just moving. You gotta get on this plane. You know, I w I was really upset after the game, players were really upset. So I think I just didn’t process it. And that probably helped is it didn’t give me a choice of how to react. One foot in front of the other.
And it was fast.
[00:05:15] Mike Klinzing: What was the conversation like in terms of what they told you they were looking for? What were some of the things that either they felt that you could bring to the table or things that they felt needed to be changed in order to get the program where the administration wants it to go.
[00:05:33] Bart Lundy: No, there was, there were a lot of a lot of things they were looking for. I think number one was an established head coach and kind of unique to our, this time and place in college basketball. They, they really wanted someone who was. Necessarily division one at the time. And I think that goes back and by no means, am I comparing myself to these guys, but you know Bo Ryan had come here from division three, Bruce Pearl had come from division two and they had had success with those guys, spent a few years. People remember that success. And so again, for me coming from division two, that was flattering and for them to be able to recognize that there’s pretty good basketball outside of division one.
[00:06:21] Mike Klinzing: So you get back and you talk that over, I assume, with your wife, who else are you talking over this decision with, besides your wife when you start considering whether or not you really going to go ahead and move forward?
[00:06:33] Bart Lundy: Yeah, mostly my wife, my family, these are real life decisions. I have a blended family. And I’ve not taken some other opportunities because I have sons who are in the area who live with my ex-wife during school days and back and forth and all that.
So the things in the past, I have not gone after, because yeah, I wasn’t going to leave the area. Well they’re old enough. My last son who’s in high school, he’s going to be a senior and you know, the discussion was dad, you’ve sacrificed. You stayed, you know in a year I’m not gonna live with you or mom.
He kind of gave me his blessing. So and then my wife and then Queens, Queens is a partner and they did everything they could do to keep me there, which was again, flattering. But you know, I discussed it with them and was open and honest about the opportunity and how we were looking.
[00:07:36] Mike Klinzing: When you make the decision and you’re going to go ahead and take the job. What’s the conversation like with your staff? Obviously, Coach Leonard takes over for you. I don’t know how much influence you had in making that happen or not happen during the course of the discussions and obviously your kids that played for you. And that you put a lot of time and effort invested a ton in that you had a great season. You’ve had a great record your entire time at Queens. So what’s that discussion like both with your staff and with your players at Queens, once you’d made the decision to go.
[00:08:10] Bart Lundy: Yeah. The situation at Queens was pretty unique.
In two ways, one Grant had been with me the entire nine years he was he had been my assistant the entire time. And so that helped to facilitate. Nope, getting the job and it, and it wasn’t immediate. But, but I can, I went to Queens AD and the president said, look we built this, he deserves a shot.
You know, Queens is going division one and they knew that that was coming around the bend. So that made it a little more complicated for Grant. But at the end of the day it was, it was kind of like, okay, we’re going to move forward and I had enough respect from them to be able to tell them, Hey, you either need to hire Grant or not hire Grant and let him come to Milwaukee.
And Grant was in a pretty good spot because he’s from Milwaukee. And so he was either going to be a head coach or go home. So he was going to be fine either way. And then we had a couple of other staff members who one came with me here and one stayed with Grant. So everyone was taken care of, which was nice.
And then the players we didn’t have a senior on the roster. This is the second unique part. So not a senior on the roster, a really good team. Queens was a. Going into the transition. They were really afraid that it would fall apart. And so all of that played into one getting granted the job and to my conversations with the team, which were in the presence of the AD and president, which was fine.
I didn’t mind but they wanted, when I told them that I was leaving, that they could be there to say, Hey, We’re going to keep this roll and we’re going to find a good coach. They hadn’t offered Grant the job at that point. So it was a fairly new dynamic that was going on.
And then they left and I had time with the players. And that, that honestly is the hardest part. You know, I didn’t really think that I would probably leave Queens. So they have been confident that they were in a really stable situation. So that was the way it went.
[00:10:31] Mike Klinzing: Yeah, I think those conversations when you spend again so much time together, players and coaches, and again, now you’re talking about guys who’ve had for two or three seasons that built that relationship with, and to walk away, even though deep down. I get it. They understand the opportunity that was put in front of you, but at the same time, that relationship is it’s an important one.
Let’s face it for a college basketball player. That relationship with their coach and their staff is probably the most important one that they have in their college experience. So you can certainly understand. The player’s mindset. And obviously yours are difficult. That is to have those conversations and say goodbye and move on.
I’m sure that you’re going to continue to stay in touch with those guys. Obviously you’re going to root for grant, not success as they go forward. So now you get on the ground and walking, and what’s your first step. Once you accept the job, you obviously you have to start looking at where is the program right now?
So who are the conversations? That, who are you talking to? Obviously the, who else are you going to and saying, Hey, where are we right now? So you can start to formulate a plan of what you need to do going forward.
[00:11:41] Bart Lundy: There was so many people probably too many people wanted to that. Not only did I seek advice, but wanted to give me advice on where it should go. So I think Richard McKay at the final four said one of the best pieces of advice when you get a new job to get a second phone and you know, to have one phone and everybody’s calling and then one that you can just do.
Bits of business that have to be done. Right. Because it’s really hard to keep everything organized. And you know, what I saw was okay. I need to figure out where this roster is. There were already four kids in the portal, five kids in the portal. They obviously weren’t a great team last year.
What was the reason for that? Was it chemistry? Was it talent? You know, w w where’s this roster what am I going to do with staff? I had three targets, obviously grant was one of them and and I missed on all three of my initial targets for assistants. So really. To kind of keep rolling with that.
So staff and players and then Milwaukee put me on a media blitz. That was, it was fantastic. We got publicity out of it. But my first, I think nine days, it was just one thing after another, after another. And so it was a lot and it probably took me longer than I anticipated to figure out. okay. Where is everything with, with this roster, with this program, with staff if you had asked me when I took the job, how long it would say it took me longer. You know, and and it’s hard mostly because We’re in a different age and college basketball with the portal. NIL and all that. You’re calling a kid and he’s got a comparable school with schools offering him a $15,000 in NIL.
Well, I mean, I’m not doing that
[00:13:55] Mike Klinzing: I was trying to figure that out
[00:13:58] Bart Lundy: right
[00:14:00] Mike Klinzing: Time to hire that NIL expert. Right. It won’t be long before everybody’s got one of those on staff for sure.
[00:14:05] Bart Lundy: And yeah, it is what it is. So, so I, it was it was a difficult process trying to figure out where we were and where we needed to get. And I think you’ll have it a lot of years as a head coach, I’ve got more patience than probably a lot of people.
So I did let it evolve. probably missed on some recruits because of that, but wanted to go slower rather than be a bull in a China Shop.
[00:14:35] Mike Klinzing: All right, let’s go to the staff part of it. So the first three guys that you target, you can’t get them to join you for whatever those reasons are.
Now you’ve got to go and figure out, okay, where do I find the kind of staff that I want to put together? So what was your process there? Are you calling your contacts? Are you reaching out to people you’ve worked with in the past? Are you reaching out with people with connections to the Midwest, the city of Milwaukee?
Just, what was your process?
[00:14:59] Bart Lundy: Yeah, all of that, all of that. I wanted some, some guys that I knew or that people I knew were close with wanted, I thought it was important not being from the Midwest, not being from Wisconsin, not being from Milwaukee, that I talked to as many people candidates that had those connections as possible.
So I think at the final four, I had 30 interviews at the final four. And most of those were people who were somehow connected to the state. And you know, it was it was gradual. I ended up hiring a junior college head coach who I thought was, had taken two different programs.
He’s younger, Jake Williams, younger but had taken two. Ones that okay. Program resource-wise the other has no business winning and he won at a high level of both just watched him hustle over the years and thought we needed junior college connections and then hired former player from UWM, Jose Winston, who was tied in with high school and grassroots in Milwaukee and the state as a guy, everybody respected.
And he is great, not only on that recruiting side, but also a very good coach and awesome with our community relations and alumni relations kind of brought everybody together. And then And then I hired a guy named Mark Shue who has been around kind of known as a recruiter, but really wasn’t.
Be more known as a coach. And I felt like he is a grinder and a guy that I can kind of develop as a coach, give him more responsibility on the floor than he’s had. Cause I think that’s important. I think guys hire these assistants and they say, oh, run around and get players. But at my, at my point in my career, significance to me is helping our players.
Get better and reach their goals, but also the staff I want to see them develop and fill in the gaps and be, be head coaches at some point. And you know, I think coach shoes, one of those, and then retain the, the director of operations. Who’s a brilliant guy. Really knew that in ins and outs of the system there, which was, has been invaluable.
And then and then I’ve got a guy who was with me at Queens, who’s going to be the director of player development and then retained two of the graduate assistants. So some pieces that were already in place.
[00:17:35] Mike Klinzing: So you get everybody in place and you start looking around and saying, okay, now we’ve got to figure out the roster. We’ve got to go ahead. We’ve got to start hitting the recruiting trail. What does that look like? Getting the job at this point, compared to what it might look like if you were back at Queens and certainly recruiting, how is that different? And then clearly you’re in another different geographic area where you’ve got to start to rebuild those relationships with high school coaches and grassroots coaches.
Like you talked about which your staff can help them with that, but just talk a little bit about, Hey, how do we fill this roster?
[00:18:07] Bart Lundy: Yeah, I think you start with a, what do you have where’s the roster now. And we had Three weeks with these guys sat down and had some pretty, pretty hard talks with some of them about how I saw them fitting in the system.
They ran here was much different. And not that I just ran them off, but just to be honest with guys and that’s what players want. So we opened up a few more spots and We really went about for me, I want to guys that I was familiar with first and, and guys that fit what we do, which is we’re going to play fast.
We’re going to shoot a lot of threes. We’re going to pick up 94 feet defensively. So there’s a certain skill set that you need. And and really, it’s kind of been amazing to, to see it develop because I’ve gotten a lot of kids. We may have 4 North Carolina kids in Milwaukee. So I’m sure that will change.
That may change over time. But I guess you go with what you know,
[00:19:10] Mike Klinzing: You’re bringing them in in the spring. Not in the middle of January, baby.
[00:19:13] Bart Lundy: That’s right. That’s right. It’s an indoor sport. Remember that? Remember that?
[00:19:19] Mike Klinzing: All right. So you get, you start getting your guys in place. You’re talking to the previous players that were on the roster.
You’re, you’re starting to bring in some guys that you feel like are going to fit your system. As you look around, let’s say outside of what’s going to happen on the floor. Just kind of getting what you need in place around from a facility standpoint, from a getting an idea of, Hey, what’s the chain of command here?
What are some of the things that you looked at that you feel like are really strengths of? What UWM has that makes you believe that you can have the kind of program want to have.
[00:19:58] Bart Lundy: Well, I said this in a press conference and I had some questions about what would, what did, I mean when I evaluated the job, it had no gaps.
There were no, there were no reasons that you couldn’t succeed. We’re opening a brand new practice facility in the fall, which is really a game changer. The arenas, the old Mecca, where the bucks used to play and it’s been renovated it’s, it’s really nice 9,000 seats. And you can literally look out from the Concourse out the window and see the FiServe across the parking lot.
So as far as a kid, like. And you want to be over there. The next step is right next door. Yeah. It’s just a parking lot away, but there’s a lot that goes into that going across that parking lot. But you know, I thought that everything was in place. So to be good. The league is a great league of lots of tradition, but it’s pretty winnable league.
Four different teams have won the last four years. So I think in today’s environment, you can, you can make, you can have some tests quickly in a league like the Horizon. So there’s a lot of good things. There’s a lot of there’s a lot, a lot of reasons that you can succeed and not many pitfalls.
[00:21:21] Mike Klinzing: You look ahead to what you’re going to do with the players in terms of individual workouts and just the things that you want to get in place from a basketball philosophy standpoint, and just getting your system in so that the players understand it, getting to know your staff so that they understand what you’re trying to teach and how you want to go about doing what it is that you do out on the floor, both offensively and defensively.
What does that look like on the ground this summer? Obviously a huge summer on your first season. What does that look like?
[00:21:54] Bart Lundy: I think you, you hit on it. But I would go the other way. I need to coach my coaches first. I think we, we all have to speak the same language. You know, we all have to understand I’ve got a lot of new guys really only one guy that has been with me for, so I think we take it slowly, even with the.
And then with the players I want to first concentrate on the summer being a time for their development. And yeah, I know that the team stuff is important and getting my philosophies in is important. But more important to me is that they get buy in that they feel like we’re trying to develop them as players.
That we worry about development and pace of our work. More than we worry about exactly how you’re closing out and shell drill and all that, all the stuff that we’re going to have to worry about. But I think the summertime, even though the rules have changed and you can do more as a team it’s still a time for, for guys to develop and get better.
And I think that’s going to be our focus. So coach the coaches. Start to get everybody on the same page. There’s nothing worse for new players, new coaches. You know, this coach is saying it one way, this coach is saying it another way. So that’s the organization of the words we use is really important to me.
And then getting those guys to buy in and, and believe that, Hey, you’re, you’re here to get better and we’re here to help.
[00:23:36] Mike Klinzing: Because you’re new because you are trying to get that all established what we just talked about. Do you see yourself being more hands-on in the off season this year being your first season, then you will moving forward with.
Now you’ve gone through a season or two seasons with guys where they’ve heard your voice all during the school year, all during the season. And now maybe once you have your assistance at the point where they understand fully what it is that you want, where maybe you back off a little bit where you’re not, not that you’re not involved, but where you’re maybe not as hands-on in summers to come.
Just how do you approach that compared to maybe where you were at Queens, where you’ve been established for a longer period of time?
[00:24:21] Bart Lundy: Well at Queens in division two, we couldn’t coach them in the summer. So this is, this is kind of, I got out of division one, right at the beginning of when you could work out in the summer.
I think my last year was the first season we could do it in the summer. So I would Queens, I would be still pretty involved in the spring. Cause I thought it was important that they, they see me trying to pivot and develop them and you know, and do it in the right way.
It was all about them and in the off season and then we would have to be creative as far as their development in the summer, we would keep them over the summers at Queens, but we couldn’t just be in there. Hands-on so I think there’s going to be a balance, but this summer, for sure.
I’m going to be in that gym. I think it’s super important. We’re going to have a team by June, hopefully. And I can go out and I can worry about chasing the next recruiting class or I can spend time really working on these guys and obviously we’ll recruit, but I think I got to spend a good bit of time in the gym helping these guys.
Letting them learn to trust me developing some chemistry with them individually and as a team and see where it goes from here, because those are the most important guys.
[00:25:50] Mike Klinzing: As you look ahead, as you had any conversation, you talked about it. About the NIL and the transfer portal. Have you had conversations with other coaches in the profession about, Hey, where are we on this?
As you transitioned from division to division one, and you start thinking about impact that, and I own the transfer portal have had so far already on college basketball, but now thinking about how it’s going to impact you, your program, how you coach wouldn’t go about it. What are the, what are those conversations?
[00:26:22] Bart Lundy: Yeah, I’ve spoken to lots of, lots of coaches at different levels on division one, how they’re going about it? We had the Horizon league meetings and it’s a topic in the conference meetings with the commissioner do we need to be as a league proactive? I’ve had lunches and breakfast with the owners here.
Who are involved with other places, other schools that can give me some insight on what’s happening at other places. And really, I don’t think I have a definite plan yet, but I know what the landscape looks like. I don’t really love it. I don’t think anybody loves it, but you know, we’re going to have to figure it out and I’m not putting any pressure on us now, and I’m not as we recruit, obviously you can’t entice kids with the NIL, but I’m really telling them, like I would rather I would rather tell you you’re going to get nothing.
And then something rolls around and you get it. And you’re pleasantly surprised, but don’t pick Milwaukee for that. That’s not where we’re going with this.
[00:27:32] Mike Klinzing: Yeah. It’s such a challenge to figure out. I can understand, understand the logic behind it. And yet at the same time, I can’t even imagine what it does to you as a college basketball coach, trying to.
Navigate. Okay. Now you’ve got players who, as you mentioned before, some other schools offering me this and I’ll deal, and I’ve got to try to figure that out and navigate it. Yeah. Just from a transfer portal standpoint, guys always are. And it’s, it’s one thing to another where if a guy’s not super happy.
That they can walk out the door so much easier than it was in the past. And again, there’s certainly positives to that where if a coach leaves or they’re in a situation where it’s not ideal for them, that the kid does have an opportunity to go and play somewhere else and not have to sit out a season, but yet it feels like it’s opened up this whole.
Can of worms where everybody thinks that the grass is greener on the other side. And I think that too many kids are probably getting poor advice from whoever it is. That’s in their ear in terms of, Hey, maybe it’s worth sticking it out for a year. The enabled to maybe not get off the bench as much as you want and refreshing here, but Hey, come your sophomore year, your junior year, you’re going to be players and players are going to develop and you’re going to get an opportunity to be able to play.
So when you’re having conversations with players, especially, let’s say your kids who aren’t getting as many minutes as they would, like, what do you foresee or would have done at Queens? Talk to those kids at the backend of your bench, who that they’re eventually going to be able to be contributors, but maybe their time just isn’t in the moment.
So what are those conversations like?
[00:29:15] Bart Lundy: I think you just have to be truthful, always really, really honest and to me, you got to create a culture program where they feel like they’re part of something bigger than themselves. So when those doubts come up or when those other opportunities come up, they go.
Yeah. But I kinda like being a part of this and we try to create that environment that we’ve talked before, like to call us a cult we’re create our culture and some buy-in and you know you’re not going to keep everybody happy.
Some kids are gonna try to go be happy somewhere else. But we didn’t really have those issues at Queens. We didn’t have guys jumping in the portal and we have plenty of good players that could have gone lots of places. And that’s what we’ll try to create here.
Obviously the landscape’s changed and it’s going to be more turmoil, starting a program than having what I left at Queens, which was established and had a good thing rolling. This is not rolling at this point. It’s not even stumbling and bumbling around, so it’s going to take awhile, but it’s just a daily grind, daily process.
How do we get better?
[00:30:44] Mike Klinzing: I know you and I talked the last time about the shared language. You mentioned the call piece of it, putting together that player dictionary, for lack of a better word for all of the terminology that you have, that’s important to you. And you mentioned it earlier as well with the coaching staff and making sure that everybody’s using the same language so that the players understand that this coach and that coach we’re all on the same page and everybody’s hearing that same message.
Have you started to. Put that in place, get that to your coaching staff. And as it started to trickle into conversations with the players.
[00:31:15] Bart Lundy: Yeah, no, not yet. We actually. Oh, a lot of these guys are Jake. Jake will be onboarded. This coming week Jose will be the following week and then coach Shuee probably two weeks after that.
And I did stagger it that they’re already through their paperwork, but they’re not actually on campus. You know, moving families. Jose was a high school coach. So now he’s trying to make sure he finishes that. Right. But I think by not overwhelming everyone with new pieces everybody in the athletic department in this, this.
I sat down with Buzz Williams at the final four. Now just pick his brain about, well, how do you, how do you go about this? You know, and the best piece of advice he gave me and gave me a lot was you’re new. Everyone’s trying to figure you out. And you’re trying to figure everyone else out.
The players, the administration, all that don’t bring three new assistant coaches right away. And because now it’s just all muddled and everyone’s trying to figure everything out. So it’s really just been me and the guys that were here who already knew the players and they were not in coaching roles.
So when I was running practice, it was. I’m just kind of solo you know, those guys were allowed to be on the floor, but you know, they were at that point, I think, afraid to say anything. So, so I haven’t had to worry about that piece yet. And I think it’s gotta be a gradual process.
Now the players are gonna leave and they’ll be back later in June. So we’ve got some time here with the staff. It’s really good together and start to learn each other.
[00:33:00] Mike Klinzing: What’s been the most pleasant surprise about working found since you got there. Something that they needed think was going to be there.
Something that just popped up that you’re like, man, this is, this is even better than I thought.
[00:33:14] Bart Lundy: Hmm. I think the support I knew I had a feeling that the city would come out if you. But maybe it’s because I did all this media, but it’s been amazing to me, the, the recognition in the city and the desire in the city for UWM to be a winner there’s 200,000 graduates of UWM and 74% live in this area.
So everywhere I go, I run into somebody that’s you know, it was a guy with a son that’s a season ticket holder that just comes up and they’re excited and, and and you know, I love Queens, but we didn’t have that. You know, we were small private school. Didn’t have name recognition here.
It’s I think if you win the top will come off the building. So that’s been kinda new and hope that it would be that way, but it’s been better than I thought.
[00:34:12] Mike Klinzing: Has the success of the Bucks had an impact? Like how do you see that in terms of. Obviously the success of the team, Giannis being the biggest star in the league, in the city, good for basketball in the city and gets more people excited about basketball.
Does that translate in any way that you see yet at this point? I mean, obviously you haven’t been there that long to really know exactly what that does, but I’ve got to think that having the bucks next door to you and having that kind of success just feeds the basketball fever for lack of a better way of saying it.
[00:34:45] Bart Lundy: Yeah, absolutely. All you gotta do is look at the deer district last night, it’s packed. And that parking lot that they’re standing in is the separator between the two arenas. So you know, I don’t know yet if that translates, but it makes me excited that there’s, there’s lots of basketball fans here and you know, if we could just put Giannis in a Milwaukee Panther Jersey instead of, instead of a Buck’s Jersey, I’m sure that would help, but I would definitely
[00:35:18] Mike Klinzing: Just got to find the next one.
[00:35:22] Bart Lundy: Yeah, exactly. How many of those folks standing in that crowd or are UWM alums though that that’s the, that’s the trick and do they have school spirit do they want a winner?
And you know, we just have to put a good product out there.
[00:35:38] Mike Klinzing: That’s clearly the number one priority. You put a winning product out there and you’re going to draw people. Any other thoughts or conversations with the athletic administration about how you draw more fans? What’s it going to take to be able to get more people?
Into the arena clearly again, number one is if you win, people are going to show up a lot more than if you’re putting a losing product on the floor, but just in terms of when you start planning for next season and you think about how can we generate more interest, any thoughts on how that process is going to go?
[00:36:11] Bart Lundy: I think it’s, it’s a team effort. They’ve done a tremendous job with the media so far and just. Getting some, some buzz about new time in the program, new era and then it’s daily, they’re doing a fantastic job helping me get out and be visible today. I’ve got lunch with I think it’s 30 student leaders.
Students who had been to five or more games last year. So you just, you just make yourself visible and vulnerable sometimes as coaches, that’s the hardest part and just be out you know, they all go back to Bruce Pearl and what he did here. Not only did he get. Build a winner, but he was on campus.
He was pumping up the students that’s what they remember. And I’m not, I don’t have that. I’m not the marketer that Bruce Pearl is. But I know that if you just, if you just make the effort that that people will get behind you.
[00:37:11] Mike Klinzing: What are you most excited about moving forward? What’s the one thing that you’re like, man, I can’t wait for.
Is it that first day of practice, the first game? What are you most excited about?
[00:37:21] Bart Lundy: I’m excited for whatever the date is June 28. I think when we can get the team together, the team that’s going to be the team next year and they come back for summer and. They’re all there. And we have those first meetings and we start to, to pump into them a vision of how this is going to happen and what we’re going to do and how we’re going to do it.
To me that’s the most special part of this, and it’s not even on the court, it’s the it’s the individual sessions, it’s learning each other. You know, it’s you know, talking about, okay, this is, this is how we’re going to go about our work and having them, their eyes light up and be excited about what’s going to happen.
[00:38:10] Mike Klinzing: What’s the biggest challenge. Last question. What’s the biggest challenge who afford in order to get the program where you want it.
[00:38:17] Bart Lundy: I think for sure building the roster. I think we, we all want to say, oh, we’re, we’re good coaches, but we’re only as good as those players getting the right players and the right fits for the system.
Having guys that you can trust and they’re here for the right reasons and our workers. You know, want to go to class and do all those things? I think that’s, that’s the most challenging part. When you, when you come into a program that maybe hasn’t had success.
[00:38:51] Mike Klinzing: I can’t thank you enough for your time this morning. Wish you nothing but success as you go about building that University of Wisconsin Milwaukee program. I know that you’re going to take what you have learned over the course of your career and be able to apply that there in Milwaukee. So thank you for your time. Appreciate it. And to everyone out there…Thanks for listening. And we will catch you on our next episode. Thanks.