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Stephen Ott is in his second season on the Mountain Hawks’ coaching staff after serving as an assistant coach for two stints at Siena. He first worked under former Lehigh head coach Fran McCaffery as director of basketball operations from 2006-08 and then returned to Siena as assistant coach for 2010-11 under new head coach Mitch Buonaguro. Ott assisted in all aspects of the program, including recruiting, scouting, practice preparation, film review and talent evaluation.
Ott made an immediate impact on the Lehigh program, helping lead the Mountain Hawks to a school-record 27 wins in 2011-12, their second Patriot League Championship in the last three years and a historic NCAA Tournament win over Duke.
"Stephen became a clear candidate for this position, especially due to the very strong recommendation from Fran McCaffery, who worked with Stephen in building a championship program at Siena," said Lehigh head coach Brett Reed. "Stephen’s growth and development continued with the Hoop Group where he had major responsibilities and established very strong contacts and relationships with coaches throughout the entire region and in some cases, the country."
Ott served as director of basketball operations under McCaffery from 2006-08, helping build a Saints’ program that advanced to the second round of the 2008 NCAA Tournament after an upset of Vanderbilt.
Due to his leadership ability and relationship building skills, Ott went onto a prestigious position as the Director of Team Events at the Hoop Group. His time there resulted in Team Events having the largest number of teams (over 1,000 AAU Teams) and an increase in talent level. He organized a number of events run annually by the Hoop Group, including: The Philly Hoop Group Classic, three national High School Showcases (providing the premier stages for top high school talent in the nation) and the Hoop Group Jam Fests (various AAU showcase for rising scholastic stars).
A 2005 graduate of the State University of New York at New Paltz, Ott began his coaching career as the head assistant coach at Ulster County Community College. In his first year there, Ulster increased its win total by 10 games, defeating the top-ranked team in the country and placing third in the Mid-Hudson Athletic Conference.