Bowling Green State University Athletics Director Bob Moosbrugger has announced that men's basketball coach Michael Huger has signed a three-year contract extension through the 2023-24 season.
"Michael, Tonya and Michael Jr. are an important part of our community, and we are thrilled at the opportunity to continue to build upon our recent success on the court and in the classroom," BGSU athletics director Bob Moosbrugger said. "We are thankful for Coach Huger's commitment to the Falcons, and we look forward to the continued strong performance of our men's basketball program. The ability to retain quality coaches is critical and the estate of Bill Frack continues to leave a lasting legacy with BGSU men's basketball each and every day."
In 2018-19, after the league's preseason poll picked the Falcons to finish last in the MAC, Huger led Bowling Green to its first MAC Championship Game appearance in 17 years. BGSU, which earned an automatic berth to the league quarterfinals for the first time in a decade, won games over Ball State and Northern Illinois in Cleveland to advance to the MAC title game for just the fourth time in school history.
Huger is the second coach in BGSU history and first since John Weinert (1976-86) to have guided the Falcons to multiple MAC Tournament wins across multiple seasons. In Huger's debut campaign in 2015-16, Bowling Green advanced to the conference semifinals with wins over Kent State and Central Michigan.
"I am very excited to sign this contract extension at my alma mater," Huger said. "I would like to thank President Rodney Rogers, our AD Bob Moosbrugger, and the University administration for their support and confidence shown in me, my coaching staff and our team. My family and I love it here! We are so anxious to continue on the path our men's basketball program is headed! I love BG and look forward to many years to come – Ay Ziggy Zoomba!"
The Falcons went 22-12 in 2018-19, marking the first 22-plus win season since 2001-02, and the fourth time overall for the program since 1950. Huger guided BGSU to a 12-6 record in Mid-American Conference play, as the Falcons won 12-plus MAC games for just the seventh time in program history.
The Falcons have achieved success in the classroom under Huger, as well. The men's basketball program has a graduation success rate of 86 percent, tied for fourth in the MAC and well ahead of the national average of 69 percent. The program posted a 980 single-year score in the most recent APR report, and continues to trend in a positive direction.
Having established a strong recruiting foundation over several classes, four Falcons – Demajeo Wiggins (senior), Antwon Lillard (senior), Dylan Frye (junior) and Justin Turner (sophomore) – reached 1,000 career points in 2018-19. Wiggins, Huger's first signee, also finished his career with 1,000 rebounds, becoming just the third player in BGSU history to post 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in the Orange and Brown. Turner became the first BGSU sophomore to earn First Team All-MAC honors since Cornelius Cash in 1972-73.
Huger and his staff have developed six 1,000-point scorers and four all-conference selections, on top of bringing in several highly-touted recruiting classes. Huger has earned commitments from five three-star prospects over his BGSU tenure, including a 2017 class that ESPN.com tabbed as BGSU's highest-rated class in the database's history.
Additionally in 2018-19, Huger led BGSU to a win over No. 18 Buffalo (Feb. 1, 2019) in front of a record-breaking crowd of 5,000 fans at the Stroh Center. Bowling Green went 14-2 at home, setting a new arena record for the men's basketball program, while also posting its best 13-game (11-2) start to MAC play in school history.
As a result of BGSU's success in 2018-19, Huger was named a finalist for the Hugh Durham Award, Ben Jobe Award and the Skip Prosser Man of the Year Award.
Bowling Green has posted a record of 67-65 under Huger. BGSU has improved its MAC East finish in each subsequent year following Huger's debut season. After finishing in sixth place in 2015-16, the Falcons finished fifth in 2016-17 and fourth in 2017-18 prior to a second-place finish in 2018-19.
Huger was a standout player for the Falcons from 1989-1993. A 1994 graduate of BGSU, Huger was a two-time All-MAC selection and the runner-up for MAC Player of the Year as a senior. Huger played 85 games for head coach Jim Larranaga, averaging 11.6 points, 3.3 assists and 2.2 rebounds across his career.