Larry Shyatt resigned his head coaching job at Wyoming, and former University of Kentucky player Allen Edwards, who has been an assistant coach under Shyatt the last five seasons, was named the new head coach.
“This opportunity to lead the Wyoming Cowboys is a blessing I’m truly thankful for,” Edwards said Monday. “I’d like to thank Larry Shyatt for bringing me to Laramie and allowing me to grow and develop as a professional with his help.”
Edwards, who played at Kentucky from 1994 to 1998, was part of the Wildcats’ national championship teams in 1996 and 1998. He graduated from UK in 2002.
“An institution is fortunate when it has the opportunity to hire its next head coach from within a successful program,” Wyoming Athletics Director Tom Burman said. “Larry Shyatt’s Cowboy basketball legacy has allowed us to do that. We are thrilled to place its future in the hands of Allen Edwards. His basketball pedigree is undeniable, including two national championships with one of the game’s most storied programs, Kentucky. He has coached with, and played under some of the game’s finest coaches. … We believe Wyoming basketball has an extremely bright future.”
Edwards has been an assistant at Wyoming since 2011 after previous stops on the staffs at Kentucky, Western Kentucky, Towson, Virginia Commonwealth and Morehead State.
He scored 819 points in his career at Kentucky. He averaged 6.2 points, 2.2 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 133 games.
Edwards has helped coach Larry Nance Jr., who was picked 27th in last year’s NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Lakers.
“I want to congratulate Coach Shyatt on the outstanding job he did at Wyoming,” Nance said. “He took a 10-win program to nearly four-straight seasons with 20 wins. … He couldn’t be handing off the program to a more capable person. Coach Edwards is one of the smartest basketball minds I know, even at the NBA level. How he handles his players and staff, he commands respect and he deserves it. Allen is the right man for the job and he will continue the success there at Wyoming.”
Shyatt coached at Wyoming for a total of six seasons, split over two stints. His teams compiled an overall record of 117-78, including this year’s team which finished 14-18.
He first took over the Cowboys in the 1997-98 season, but then left after that season for Clemson.
Shyatt, 64, returned to Wyoming in 2011, leading the Cowboys to the NCAA Tournament last year where they lost in the first round to Northern Iowa.
Shyatt said Monday that as a veteran coach “growing up in the era I did you dream of being able to walk out on your own terms.”
“If you coached in the day and age that we started in, it’s about the nicest thing you can do,” Shyatt said.
Edwards’ previous coaching history
2011-15: Assistant coach at Wyoming
2010-11: Assistant coach at Western Kentucky
2009-10: Assistant coach at Towson
2006-09: Assistant coach at Virginia Commonwealth
2003-06: Assistant coach at Morehead State
2002-03: Assistant coach at Kentucky