CULLOWHEE, N.C. - Western Carolina men’s basketball assistant coach Brigham Waginger was named to the Under Armour “30-under-30” team as selected and released by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC), it was announced during the organization’s annual convention held in conjunction with the 2016 NCAA Men’s Final Four.
The “30-under-30” team is designed to highlight and recognize up-and-coming basketball coaches across the nation.
A former four-year standout on the basketball court under head coach Larry Hunter at Western Carolina, Waginger has been on the sidelines for the Catamounts since his graduation. He spent the 2010-11 season as the WCU Director of Basketball Operations before assuming a full-time coaching role in the summer of 2011. Following the 2014-15 season, Waginger was promoted to the program’s recruiting coordinator.
“I am happy to see Brigham get this recognition. He is an outstanding young coach with a bright future in the coaching field. He is a very hard worker, intelligent, knowledgeable, a good teacher, an insatiable learner, and passionate about coaching and the game of basketball,” said WCU head coach Larry Hunter on Waginger’s selection to the honorary list by the NABC.
Through five seasons on the sidelines, Waginger has proved to be a valuable asset to the program in both player development and in game planning, especially in the areas of scouting. With Waginger on the sideline under Hunter’s tutelage, WCU has won 81 games, advancing to two Southern Conference tournament championship games. Last season, the Catamounts earned a post-season berth for just the third-time in program history, accepting a bid in the College Basketball Invitational (CBI).
As a player under Hunter, Waginger was known for being basketball savvy and hard-nosed defense which led him to share Southern Conference Defensive Player of the Year honors as a senior after leading the league in steals for a third-consecutive season. Waginger finished his Catamount playing career with 285 steals, shattering the school benchmark of 221 held by WCU Hall of Famer, Henry Logan.
A native of South Webster, Ohio, Waginger finished his WCU career as both the school's career and single-season (90) steals leader with his name occupying three of the top four single-season steals performances.
Offensively, Waginger scored 810 career points including 27 career double-digit scoring efforts. He connected on 165 career 3-pointers to rank sixth in WCU’s record books at the time of his graduation. He additionally concluded his playing career ranked ninth in career assists with 398 over his four years in Cullowhee.
Waginger has been a part of two of WCU’s three post-season berths for the men’s basketball program. In addition to being on staff for last season’s CBI run, Waginger was a senior on the 2009-10 team that earned a berth in the CollegeInsider.com tournament (CIT). That season, the guard collected Mid-Major Defensive All-America plaudits from the same organizing group, helping guide the Catamounts to their first 20-win season as a NCAA Division I program (22-12).