Bob Sundvold introduced as UMSL head men’s basketball coach

Bob Sundvold, new head coach of the UMSL men's basketball team

Bob Sundvold, the new head coach of the UMSL men’s basketball team, speaks at a news conference on May 8 at the Mark Twain Athletic & Fitness Center.

Bob Sundvold, a veteran coach with more than 30 years of experience as both a head coach and assistant coach, has been named the head men’s basketball coach at the University of Missouri–St. Louis.

Lori Flanagan, director of athletics at UMSL, formally introduced Sundvold at a news conference on Wednesday in the Mark Twain Athletic & Fitness Center.

“We are delighted to name Bob as our new coach and welcome him and his family to St. Louis,” Flanagan said. “He has achieved tremendous success throughout his coaching career and we expect our men’s basketball program to continue growing and competing at a high level under his direction. We are looking forward to this new era of UMSL men’s basketball.”

Sundvold comes to UMSL after spending last season at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston under Jay Spoonhour.

“My wife, Denise, and I are both excited for this opportunity to be the head men’s basketball coach at UMSL. We are looking forward to returning to Missouri and moving to St. Louis,” Sundvold said. “I am thankful for the opportunity the UMSL administration has given me and am looking forward to sustaining the success Steve Tappmeyer put in place.”

Sundvold broke into the college coaching ranks as an assistant coach under Norm Stewart at the University of Missouri–Columbia. From 1978-1991 he helped the Tigers make nine NCAA Tournament appearances while winning six Big Eight Conference Championships and 286 total games.

Sundvold then moved on to coach one season at Missouri State University in Springfield (formerly Southwest Missouri State University) for Charlie Spoonhour, as the Bears won the 1992 Missouri Valley Conference Tournament to advance to the NCAA Tournament.

Following his one season at Missouri State, Sundvold took over as head coach at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg (former Central Missouri State University). His Mules teams posted 82 wins with trips to the NCAA Division II Tournament in each of his last three seasons. The 1995 squad was led by NCAA Division II Player of the Year Tyrone Latimer as Central Missouri State advanced to the Elite Eight.

From Central Missouri State Sundvold was hired as the head coach at the University of Missouri–Kansas City serving four years for the Kangaroos. The team posted a winning season in 2000 placing second in the Mid-Continent Conference while winning the school’s first conference tournament game. UMKC was led by Michael Jackson, the 2000 Mid-Continent Conference Player of the Year.

In eight years as a head coach at the collegiate level Sundvold compiled a 125-108 (.536) record.

Sundvold returned to an assistant coach role in 2001 joining the staff at Iowa State University in Ames. He was instrumental in recruiting three straight Top 20 classes as rated by Hoop Scoop Recruiting. The 2002 class was ranked top five in the nation. The Cyclones made back-to-back postseason NIT appearances in 2003 and 2004 advancing to the national semifinals in Madison Square Garden in 2004.

In 2004 Sundvold returned to the head coaching chair as he was hired as the head coach/general manager of the Kansas City Knights of the American Basketball Association. The 2005 squad posted a 19-9 record reaching the ABA playoff quarterfinals. He returned to college game in 2008 as an assistant coach at the University of Toledo (Ohio). He was named the interim head coach in March of 2010 before entering private business for two years.

In addition to his experience as a coach on the floor, Sundvold has also worked as a basketball color analyst for ESPN covering Big 12 Conference games along with regional broadcasts for the Missouri Valley Conference, University of Missouri and Kansas State University in Manhattan.

A 1977 graduate of South Dakota State in Brookings, Sundvold was an All-North Central Conference selection as a player and an All-Academic selection. He earned a master’s degree from the University of Missouri. His younger brother Jon played on four Big Eight Championship teams at Missouri while he was an assistant coach. Jon later went on to play nine seasons in the NBA with the Seattle Supersonics, San Antonio Spurs and Miami Heat.

He and his wife Denise have four children: Robert, Ryne, Haley and Cameron.


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