UNLV President Len Jessup and Athletics Director Tina Kunzer-Murphy announced that an offer has been made to Marvin Menzies to become the head coach of the men’s basketball program and he has accepted the agreement in principle. A contract will be submitted to the Nevada System of Higher Education Board of Regents for review and approval.
Menzies, 54, comes back to Las Vegas after nine years as the head coach at New Mexico State. Under his direction the Aggies have appeared in the postseason each of the last five seasons and six of the last seven years.
Menzies led NMSU to its fifth straight 20-win season in 2015-16, and seventh in eight years, as it was 23-11 overall and 13-1 in conference play. The Aggies have won 35 straight home conference games, which is the second-longest such streak in the nation.
This past season, NMSU won its second straight outright regular-season Western Athletic Conference Championship, which led to a berth in the NIT after falling in the conference tournament’s title game on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer.
From 2012-15, Menzies led his team to four straight WAC Tournament titles and NCAA Tournament berths. His team also won the conference tournament crown and appeared in the NCAA Tournament in 2010. Menzies also led the Aggies to the outright regular-season conference title in 2014-15 and a co-championship in 2008.
“Marvin is an experienced head coach with UNLV and west coast roots who knows what it takes to build and maintain a winning college basketball program,” Jessup said. “He is a dynamic recruiter and proven leader who understands the proud tradition of UNLV basketball, and we look forward to welcoming him back to campus.”
Menzies owns a career record of 198-111 (.641) over nine seasons as a Division I head coach and he has gone 103-37 (.736) in conference play. He has coached a pair of AP All-Americans at New Mexico State, two WAC Players of the Year, two WAC Freshmen of the Year, 20 players selected to the all-conference team, five to the all-newcomer team and seven to the all-defensive team.
“We are looking forward to bringing Marvin Menzies back to UNLV as our men’s basketball head coach,” Kunzer-Murphy said. “He has spent almost a decade as a Division I head coach, has won regular-season and conference tournament championships and has led his team to multiple NCAA Tournament appearances. He has connections to our university and our community, and respects the tradition of Runnin’ Rebel basketball.”
In 2015-16, NMSU ranked 10th the nation in scoring defense (63.1 ppg), 11th in field-goal percentage defense (39.2 percent) and fifth in rebound margin (+9.8 per game).
In 2015, Menzies was named the WAC Coach of the Year.
With a reputation as one of the nation’s best recruiters, he was hired to lead the program in Las Cruces in 2007 after spending two seasons (2005-07) as an assistant coach under Rick Pitino at Louisville. Prior to joining the Cardinals’ staff, Menzies spent one year (2004-05) at UNLV under Lon Kruger.
Before his time at UNLV, Menzies was at USC for a season (2003-04) under Henry Bibby, and he spent four years (1999-03) at San Diego State under Steve Fisher.
Menzies began his collegiate career at Santa Monica (Calif.) College as an assistant coach under John McMullen. He spent six seasons as an assistant and associate head coach (1991-94, 1995-96 and 1997-99). He was as the team’s head coach for a year (in 1994-95) and guided the Corsairs to a 24-8 record. Menzies led Santa Monica to the Western States Conference title while he earned conference coach of the year honors.
Between his time at Santa Monica, he was as an assistant coach at Cal State Sacramento (1996-97) under Don Newman as the program transitioned from Division II to Division I.
Beginning his coaching career at his prep alma mater, Hamilton High School in Los Angeles, Calif., Menzies was an assistant coach for eight years. A California native, Menzies was a letter winner in three sports at Hamilton.
Menzies earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from UCLA in 1987 and a master’s degree in education from Cal State Sacramento in 2003. He and his wife, Tammy, have a daughter, Andreanna, and a son, Andre.