Niko Medved has wasted no time in his filling out his staff at Colorado State, as the school announced the additions of Ali Farokhmanesh and JR Blount to the Rams basketball program. The duo both served under Medved at Drake this past season, where they helped the Bulldogs to a 17-17 mark and a second round appearance in the CIT.
Farokhmanesh, who came of fame as a player during Northern Iowa’s 2010 NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen run when he hit a game-clinching three-pointer to upset Kansas, comes to Fort Collins after spending the past four years as an assistant at both Drake and Nebraska. Prior to that, Farokhmanesh played overseas professionally in Austria, the Netherlands and Switzerland for four seasons, after his graduation from Northern Iowa.
As for Blount, the former Loyola-Chicago star had been on the coaching staff at Drake for the past four seasons, serving in different capacities along the way. Blount also spent time in the Division II and III coaching ranks, where he helped Saint Leo University (DII) to the NCAA Tournament in three straight campaigns, while also aiding in a National Championship run during his stay as an assistant at Wisconsin-Stevens Point (DIII).
Medved commented on the hirings, stating that the addition of these two key components will help the Rams “hit the ground running”.
“We’re really excited to add both Ali and JR here to the Ram basketball family. They’re both absolutely terrific coaches and recruiters, as I believe they are rising stars in the business. They are also terrific people and mentors for our student-athletes. Both are going to be people that Ram fans are going to love and excited for them to get started and hit the ground running.”
As a first-year head coach in the Mountain West, Medved has quite the task laid out before him, as he’s expected to resurrect a Colorado State program that finished 10-14 in 2017-2018, while winning just three conference games.