WNBA Coach Brian Agler ’80 Enjoys Success
Brian Agler always knew he would follow in his parents’ footsteps as an educator. Unlike his parents, who educated in the classroom, Agler has spent his professional career educating women on the basketball court, first as a college coach and later as a pioneering professional coach who recently became just the seventh coach in WNBA history to win 100 games.
Currently the head coach and director of player personnel for the Seattle Storm, Agler enjoyed numerous opportunities to hone his coaching methods and tactics in his career. After compiling an outstanding 248-135 record in 15 years as a college head coach, turning around programs at Northeast Oklahoma A&M Junior College, University of Missouri-Kansas City and Kansas State, Agler took a job in the now-defunct American
Named coach of the year in 1997 while leading the Columbus Quest to an 82-22 record in four seasons. Agler then made the move to the WNBA, first with the expansion Minnesota Lynx in 2000 as head coach and general manager. After assistant coaching stops with the Phoenix Mercury
and San Antonio Silver Stars, Agler has made the most of his second WNBA head coaching opportunity with the Storm, which led the Western Conference with a 9-1 record as of June 16.
“I believe as a coach you apply what you were taught and how you were taught,” said Agler, who was inducted into the Wittenberg’s Athletics Hall of Honor in 1977. “My days and experiences [at Wittenberg] both in the classroom and on the practice floor help build a strong foundation of teaching and coaching that I apply every day.”
Agler’s collegiate playing career included 112 straight starting assignments for the men’s basketball team. He led the Tigers to a four-year record of 91-21, highlighted by a national championship in 1977 and still ranks No. 2 on Wittenberg’s career assists list with 481.
“In any career, to have success, an individual needs to be confident, persistent and adaptable,” Agler said. “Those are traits that I obtained at
Wittenberg that have been very beneficial to me throughout my career.”