After leading his team to a regular-season championship and the No. 1 seed in the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament, Illinois State head coach Dan Muller was named the Missouri Valley Conference Coach of the Year at the Arch Madness pre-tournament luncheon on Thursday.

Muller finished ahead of Wichita State head coach Gregg Marshall with 102 total points, in the vote conducted by league coaches, media, and sports information directors. Muller is the fourth Redbird head coach to win the prestigious honor, joining Bob Donewald (1984), Bob Bender (1992) and his former head coach and mentor Kevin Stallings (1998).

In his fifth season at the helm of his alma mater, Muller led Illinois State to a share of the MVC regular-season title for the first time since 1998 (when he was a senior player) and the sixth time in program history. The Redbirds finished the regular season with 25-5 overall record for the most regular-season wins in program history, and ISU matched the program record for overall victories as well. ISU’s 17-1 league record has also set the standard as the most MVC wins in program history.

He is just the sixth coach in program history to win 100 games or more (101-63) and just the third coach to win 57 or more games in conference play (57-33). In each year as head coach at Illinois State, Muller’s teams have finished with a better MVC record and higher conference finish than the previous year. He has also led the Redbirds to four victories over Top-25 ranked opponents, tied for the most-ever by an ISU head coach.

In total, Muller has mentored 11 All-Missouri Valley Conference selections (two first team, six second team, and three honorable mention), six MVC All-Defensive team members, four MVC All-Newcomer Team picks and one MVC All-Freshman Team selection.

Illinois State tips off Arch Madness Friday at noon versus the winner of tonight’s No. 8 Evansville versus No. 9 Indiana State game. The Redbirds enter 2017 Arch Madness in search of their first MVC Tournament title and NCAA appearance since 1998.

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