After 10 years at Emporia State, David Moe the ESU men’s basketball head coach stepped down effective March 21. The coach who holds the third most wins in ESU history made the announcement early last week that he would be stepping down as the Hornets’ head coach in order to spend time with his family.
“It has been difficult for me and for my family to be separated for long periods of time throughout the year,” Moe said. “Trying to balance the responsibilities of being the head basketball coach at Emporia State and my responsibilities as a husband and a father has become more difficult as I see my sons and daughter grow up.”
Moe, who holds a 162-126 record during his tenure at ESU, will remain in the coaching profession but decided to relocate closer to his wife, two sons and daughter who have lived in Delaware for the past three years.
During his 10 year stretch at ESU, Moe was responsible for leading the Hornets to their first ever Division II national tournament in the 2003-2004 season. He is also one of just three coaches to take his team to every MIAA tournament held in Kansas City, and he was able to lead his team to the semifinals in four of the last six years.
Director of Athletics Kent Weiser recognized the improvement that Moe brought to the program.
“He was here for 10 seasons and just did an outstanding job for us. I think to really appreciate what he’s done you have to look back at where the program was in 2001,” Weiser said in reference to the year before Moe arrived in which the Hornets went 9-17.
With Moe being separated from his family for a good part of each basketball season, Weiser noted that Moe’s stepping down was not a surprise.
“It was not a surprise,” Weiser said. “I know this was weighing heavily on his mind really the last couple of years. It was tough because it seemed to me like when he was here, he felt he should’ve been with his family, and when he was with his family, he felt like he should’ve been here.”
The search for a new head coach began immediately after Moe stepped down. Weiser noted that despite high interest in the position (130 applicants), the process is about halfway through with hopes to name a new successor by the week of April 11.
Weiser plans on traveling to Houston this weekend to attend the National Coaches Convention to set up times with potential candidates, a process that will spill over into next week before they name the next coach.
Assistant Head Coach Wes Book has currently taken over the day to day operations of the team and will remain on staff with the team. The Hornets had two early signees that Weiser said will remain signed with the team. Book will remain in touch with the other recruits until the new coach is named.