Montana’s Wayne Tinkle Nearing the Final Four with Oregon State
You may have your favorite team playing in the NCAA tournament but as Montanans, we will always root for the Montanan. If you missed the big news over the weekend, former University of Montana Griz basketball coach, and former player, Wayne Tinkle is one step closer to coaching a team in the Final Four.
In Oregon, they're calling it "the school’s most important men’s basketball win of the past 39 years," as Oregon State Beavers basketball coach Wayne Tinkle leads his team into the Elite Eight.
OregonLive.com has more after the Beavers defeated Loyola of Chicago to advance to the next round:
After briefly gathering with his team on the floor, Tinkle tore off his pullover, leaving only a black T-shirt made his by daughters Joslyn and Elle, one that included meaningful numbers and his father’s initials on the sleeve.
If Oregon State wins Monday’s 4:15 p.m. Midwest Regional final at Lucas Oil Stadium against Houston, the Beavers would become the lowest seed ever to play in the Final Four.
I don't know about you, but Tinkle was always fun to watch while he coached the University of Montana's Griz basketball team. He always seemed to have a joy for the game and the players. It wasn't just a job.
Here's where it really gets interesting. Coach Tinkle isn't the only coach playing in the Elite 8 with Montana ties. Kelvin Sampson, the head coach of the Houston Cougars, used to coach at Montana Tech in Butte. And the two Montana-connected coaches will now face each other Monday night. As 406MtSports reports:
For Sampson, who is in his seventh season coaching Houston, it's his first trip to the Elite 8 with the Cougars but third overall as a head coach. Sampson took Oklahoma to the Final 4 in 2002 and the Elite 8 in 2003. Sampson began his head coaching career at Montana Tech from 1981-85.
The two face off on Monday at 5:15 p.m. Mountain time.
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