Bruce Weber now has a vacancy on his Kansas State men’s basketball coaching staff.
Brad Korn, who has spent the past four seasons as an assistant coach, will be the new head coach at Southeast Missouri State. SEMO’s athletics department officially announced Korn’s hire Monday. SEMO will formally introduce Korn at 2 p.m. Tuesday.
“I’m excited to welcome Brad and his family to Cape Girardeau,” SEMO athletics director Brady Barke said in a release. “Brad is a winner and has an incredible knack for building relationships with student-athletes while developing them both on and off the court. His energy and passion will bring a renewed sense of excitement to SEMO Basketball.”
Korn, who becomes the seventh head coach since SEMO became a Division I program, agreed to a five-year contract that will run through Apr. 30, 2025.
He replaces Rick Ray, who SEMO fired earlier this month after going 51-104 (27-59 Ohio Valley Conference) in five seasons. The Redhawks made the league’s eight-team OVC Tournament under Ray just once: the 2016-17 season.
In 2019-20, they finished 7-24 overall and last in the 12-team OVC with a 3-15 mark — two games worse than Tennessee-Martin and Southern Illinois-Edwardsville, which tied for 10th at 5-13.
In addition to his four seasons as a K-State assistant coach, Korn spent one year as the program’s director of operations during the 2012-13 season.
During his time as an assistant, the Wildcats won 82 games and and made the NCAA Tournament three consecutive seasons from 2017 to 2019. K-State posted back-to-back 25-win campaigns for the first time in school history (2017-18 and 2018-19). K-State claimed a share of the Big 12 regular-season championship — alongside national runner-up Texas Tech — in 2018-19.
Korn worked primarily with the Wildcats’ post players, helping Dean Wade develop into one of the best players in school history. Wade is one of only three Wildcats to rank among the school’s top 10 in both career scoring (1,510) and rebounding (685). He worked with departing senior forward Makol Mawien, who started all 103 games he appeared in during his time in Manhattan.
Korn also was instrumental in the growth of All-Big 12 selections Wesley Iwundu and D.J. Johnson during his first season a K-State assistant in 2016-17.
Iwundu earned third team All-Big 12 honors twice and went on to became the first Wildcat since 2008 to be selected in the NBA draft when he went No. 33 overall to the Orlando Magic in 2017. Johnson, an honorable mention all-league selection, set program records for both career field goal percentage (59.5) and single-season field goal percentage (62.3 in 2016-17).
Though Korn now is departing for his first head coaching position, his connection with Weber dates back to his time as a player at Southern Illinois from 1999 to 2003, when Weber was the school’s head coach. Korn redshirted as a freshman in 1999-2000 before playing the next three seasons under Weber. He ended his career under Matt Painter — now Purdue’s head coach — in 2003-04.
Weber said Monday that he’s “super excited” for Korn’s opportunity to turn around SEMO’s program.
“Every job has its challenges, but he has an athletics director that we all are familiar with during our time at SIU, who will work together with Brad to help make SEMO as successful as possible. He knows the region very well, having spent time as an assistant at both SIU and Missouri State, and will have a good understanding on how to win there.”
A 6-foot-9 forward, Korn won three Missouri Valley Conference regular-season titles as a player. He participated in 121 games during his college career, averaging 5.2 points and 2.3 rebounds in 14.5 minutes per contest. He averaged 9.7 points on 41% shooting with four rebounds and 1.9 assists as a senior, helping the Salukis to 25 wins and a 17-1 mark in MVC play.
Korn then jumped right into his coaching career, working on the Salukis’ staff from 2004 to 2012. He was a graduate assistant from 2004 to 2006 before being promoted to a full-time assistant. Korn remained in that role through the 2011-12 season. Korn’s eight-year run on SIU’s staff came during Chris Lowery’s tenure as the head coach. Lowery is the Wildcats’ associate head coach and has been on Weber’s K-State staff since April 2012.
In his eight seasons working on Lowery’s SIU staff, Korn helped the program post a 145-116 (.556) overall record, which included four postseason appearances, two Missouri Valley Conference championships and one Missouri Valley Conference Tournament title. The squad won 20-plus games and advanced to the NCAA Tournament three years in a row (2005, 2006, 2007), advancing to the Sweet 16 in the final season of that run.
“I’m very excited for Brad on getting the opportunity to become a head coach,” Lowery said. “I’ve literally watched him grow from a player to an assistant and now into having the chance to run his own program.”
Following Korn’s one-year stint at K-State in 2012-13, he departed for Missouri State, where he became an assistant coach on Paul Lusk’s staff.
During Korn’s three seasons with the Bears, the program totaled 44 victories, including a 20-win season and a CollegeInsider.com Tournament berth in 2013-14.
Korn worked with multiple All-Missouri Valley honorees at Missouri State, including 2014 All-MVC Second-Team selection Jarmar Gulley and 2016 MVC Newcomer of the Year Dequon Miller. He also coached three MVC All-Freshman Team honorees (Austin Ruder in 2014 and Obediah Church and Jarred Dixon in 2016) as well as two Most Improved Team members (Dorrian Williams in 2015 and Chris Kendrix in 2016).
The 38-year-old Korn earned his bachelor’s degree in marketing from Southern Illinois in 2004.