RUSTON – After leading Louisiana Tech to 20 victories and a Conference USA West Division title, Bulldog Basketball head coach Eric Konkol was voted as the C-USA Gene Bartow Coach of the Year.
LA Tech was picked to finish seventh in the C-USA preseason poll after losing four starters off the 2019-20 team that produced a 22-win season and a second-place finish in the league.
Konkol guided the 2020-21 Bulldogs, meshing a group of seven seniors and three stud underclassmen, to register a 20-6 overall mark and a 12-4 league record. The team clinched their third overall C-USA title (2013-14 and 2014-15) on March 5 and will be the No. 1 West seed in the C-USA Championship.
Defense was a key part to the success of Konkol’s unit this season. The ‘Dogs have highest-rated defense in C-USA, ranking 35th in the country in adjusted defensive efficiency. The team also ranks No. 1 in the league and top 20 in the nation in field goal percentage defense (40.0) and three-point field goal percentage defense (29.2).
Per KenPom, LA Tech played the second hardest league schedule. Despite that, the Bulldogs picked up several marquee wins including a 63-58 win at WKU, a 68-63 victory at North Texas and a two-game sweep at home over UAB.
LA Tech was once again dominant at home, going 15-1 for a third straight season.
Konkol, who is wrapping up his sixth season at the helm, now owns the most 20-win seasons of any head coach in Bulldog Basketball history with five. Recently, he passed Andy Russo for the fourth most victories by a head coach (currently 125-63).
The Conference USA Coach of the Year award is named in honor of C-USA Hall of Famer Gene Bartow, the legendary former coach at UAB along with other schools, who passed away in January 2012.
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