New Illinois State head men’s basketball coach Ryan Pedon has announced his first addition to his coaching staff in assistant coach Walter Offutt.
“Walter has a high-energy personality, and that has translated into his coaching career,” said Pedon. “I’ve known Walter since he was a player, and I worked with him when he was a graduate assistant at Illinois. He is a culture-changer. He impacts people around him, and he has a magnetic personality that can affect the program on a daily basis with his energy and enthusiasm.”
Offutt comes to Normal by way of the University of Toledo where he was an assistant for three seasons under Tod Kowalczyk. This past season Toledo had a 26-8 overall record breaking the school record for conference wins for a second consecutive season and the first time in program history that the Rockets earned back-to-back Mid-American Conference titles.
In 2021-22 he coached JT Shumate who was the Rockets’ first CoSIDA Academic All-American since 1998, and three All-MAC honorees. A year earlier the squad had another three players on the All-MAC squads, including 2021 MAC Player of the Year Marreon Jackson.
“My wife and I are extremely excited and thankful to be a part of Redbird Nation,” said Offutt. “I was quickly attracted to the opportunity to join Coach Pedon and an athletic department that is passionate about winning and sustaining success. I look forward to helping our student-athletes build upon the program’s rich tradition and getting ISU back to a standard of excellence in the Missouri Valley Conference.”
Prior to his time in Toledo, Offutt spent two seasons at Chattanooga, where he helped the Mocs land a Top-100 recruiting class in 2018 according to 247sports.com. Included in that class was ESPN Four-Star recruit and 2018-19 Southern Conference Freshman of the Year Kevin Easley who came out of high school as the No. 6 prep forward in Indiana and the No. 35 forward in national recruiting rankings.
The Indianapolis native also served as director of basketball operations at Ball State in 2016-17 and was a graduate manager at Illinois for two season (2014-16).
As a collegiate athlete he helped Ohio University win a school-record 29 games in 2011-12, helping advance the team to the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 as the team toppled Michigan and USF before falling in overtime to North Carolina. Against the Tar Heels he scored 26 points and was named to the All-Midwest Regional Team. Offutt’s college career – which started with two seasons at Ohio State – saw him average 11.5 points and 3.9 rebounds per game. He played three seasons of prep basketball at Warren Central High School in Indianapolis, before missing his senior season to injury.
He completed two degrees at Ohio, as he earned his bachelor’s degree in business and human relations in 2012 and a master’s degree in coaching education in 2013. He added a second master’s degree in educational policy studies from Illinois in 2016.
Walter Offutt Basketball Timeline
2019-2022 – University of Toledo, Assistant Coach
2017-2019 – University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Assistant Coach
2016-2017 – Ball State University, Director of Basketball Operations
2014-2016 – University of Illinois, Graduate Manager
2011-2013 – Ohio University, Student-Athlete
2008-2010 – The Ohio State University, Student-Athlete