“Matt is a guy with an unbelievable passion for the game and teaching,” DeVries said. “He has extensive basketball knowledge and experience from various levels of the game and has worked with some tremendous influences. We’re excited to have him back at Drake.”
Woodley boasts extensive and diverse experience at the professional, collegiate and high school levels. He has coached 21 future NBA players including Klay Thompson and Hassan Whiteside in addition to serving as the head coach of the Memphis Grizzlies D-League and an assistant for the franchise’s summer league teams.
As a three-year starter at Drake, Woodley played in 83 games and was twice named honorable mention All-MVC and the team MVP as a senior in 1999-00. He ended his career as the program’s all-time leader in three-pointers and steals. He remains the Bulldogs’ all-time steals leader with 194 and earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Drake in 2000.
“Darian and I have been friends for 20 years and have always talked about coaching together,” Woodley said. “So, when this opportunity became available, it presented the chance to work with a coach that I believe in and who I know can create sustained, long-term success at Drake. My wife, who is a Drake graduate as well, and I are excited about coming home.”
Since earning his degree, Woodley has accumulated nearly two decades of extensive coaching experience at nearly every level of the game. Most recently, he served as special assistant to the head coach at the University of Pittsburgh, where he assisted with game preparation, practice plans, scouting reports as well as day-to-day basketball operations.
Prior to Pitt, he gained experience in the professional ranks with three seasons on the staff of NBA D-League’s Iowa Energy, including serving as the organization’s head coach in 2016-17.
Woodley joined the professional ranks following three seasons as the head coach at Division II Truman State where he improved the team’s record in each of his three seasons to amass a 38-44 record as a head coach by taking over a lagging program and leading the team to eight, 10 and 20 wins in his three season. In 2013-14, he guided the program to just the sixth 20-win season in program history and set a program record with 13 conference victories.
Woodley took the reins at Truman State after two years back in central Iowa as the head coach at Waukee High School where the Warriors won their first Central Iowa Metro League (CIML) conference title and a trip to the 2011 state tournament.
Woodley added to his already extensive resume at Washington State under head coach Tony Bennett from 2006-09. During his stint at the school, the Cougars advanced to three consecutive postseason appearances, including the NCAA Sweet 16 in 2008. He served as the program’s recruiting coordinator, landing top-20 recruiting classes twice in three years. On the court, he helped the program post back-to-back 25-win seasons and NCAA tournament appearances for the first time in school history.
He spent five seasons in the Sun Belt Conference, first at the University of Denver (2001-04) before joining head coach Kermit Davis’ staff at Middle Tennessee State as an assistant coach (2004-06). Woodley’s responsibilities included recruiting, scouting, scheduling and film exchange, as well as the daily preparations for the team. At both Denver and Middle Tennessee State, Woodley supervised the men’s basketball academic programs, landing a combined 14 players on Sun Belt Conference all-academic teams. He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Wayne State (2000-01).
Woodley’s family boasts a strong coaching lineage, as his father and three brothers currently hold coaching positions at various levels. His father, Mike, is the head football coach at Grand View University, while his brother, Joe, serves as the team’s associate head coach and co-defensive coordinator. His brother, Brian, is the head football coach at Johnston (Iowa) High School, while his brother, Andy, who was a starting point guard at the University of Northern Iowa, won a state championship as the head boys’ basketball coach at Iowa City High School and was an assistant coach at Grand View.
Woodley and his wife, Jennifer, have four children – Michael (7), Molly (6), Mackenzie (4) and Miles (2).