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New Mexico adds DBO

Posted by The DirtKing on Monday, July 1, 2013 at 9:57pm.

Head coach Craig "Noodles" Neal has announced that Mike Iuzzolino has joined the Lobos as Director of Basketball Operations, completing Neal's first staff at New Mexico.

Iuzzolino comes to Albuquerque from Canisius, where he spent last season as the director of basketball operations for the Golden Griffins under Jim Baron. Prior to Canisius, Iuzzolino was the associate head men's basketball coach for three seasons at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Pa.

"I'm very excited for the opportunity to be a part of Coach Neal's staff," said Iuzzolino. "I'm ready to be a part of UNM Basketball."

With New Mexico, Iuzzolino will handle many of the day-to-day operations of the basketball staff, including all facets of team travel. He will also oversee the teams' academics along with academic advisor Natalie Williams, as well as handle UNM's basketball camps. Last year, UNM's academics were the best in program history, with an all-time high GPA in the fall semester.

"I'm very happy to have Mike here," said Neal. "I've known him for a long time, since 1993. I admired him as a player in his two NBA seasons and several professional seasons in Europe."

Neal added, "He has always been a hard worker and will be a great asset to our program. We are fortunate to have someone of his caliber to takeover our ops position."

The connection between Neal and Iuzzolino goes back to their mutual time in the CBA with the Ft. Wayne Fury. Iuzzolino started his collegiate career at Penn State before transferring to St. Francis, where he played under Baron. He was named the 1991 Northeast Conference Player of the Year and the NEC Tournament MVP, leading the Red Flash to the school's only NCAA Tournament berth with his 24.1 points per game scoring average. He is also a two-time CoSIDA First-Team Academic All-American and the 1991 CoSIDA All-Academic Player of the Year.

He was drafted in the second round (35th overall) by the Dallas Mavericks in the 1991 NBA Draft. He ended up playing two seasons for Dallas, where he averaged 9.0 points, 4.3 assists and 2.0 rebounds per game in 122 career contests. During the 1991-92 NBA season, he finished the year ranked fourth in the NBA in 3-point field goal percentage after he shot 43.4 percent from long range.

He played two years in the CBA before traveling overseas to play in the premier league in Italy for six seasons. He closed out his professional career in Greece and Spain.

Iuzzolino began his coaching career with the Duquesne women's basketball program before spending one season on the women's basketball staff at George Mason. At Saint Vincent, he coordinated all recruiting efforts and dealt with game preparation and the program's offense as the Bearcats posted a total of 43 wins in three seasons and made back-to-back appearances in the Presidents' Athletic Conference Tournament semifinal round.

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