Brendan Suhr, a finalist in the summer of 2016, this past summer for the Tex Winter Assistant Coach Lifetime Impact Award from the National Basketball Coaches Association, completed his second season as a part of the LSU men’s basketball staff in 2016-17.
Suhr has a wealth of basketball knowledge and experience and has proven to be a valuable asset to the LSU staff since joining the team prior to the team’s trip to Australia in August 2015.
The Award is presented annually to an Assistant Coach (current or inactive) who has had a storied career as an NBA Assistant Coach and has made a consistent substantial impact while on the bench.
A storied career is what Suhr continued at LSU, having been part of two NBA championships as an assistant coach. He came to Baton Rouge after serving as a part of the University of Central Florida basketball staff.
Suhr is also the founder and president of the speaking and consulting firm Off the Court, Inc., a business that features his skills as a keynote speaker, executive coach, author, and consultant for the last 25 years. The Gallup Organization has certified him as a “Master Strengths Coach”, one of only 5 people in the world who shares that distinction.
One of the most respected figures in basketball with over 25 years as a coach and executive in the National Basketball Association, Suhr won a pair of NBA titles as an assistant in Detroit when the Pistons claimed back-to-back championships in 1989 and 1990 under head coach Chuck Daly.
While at UCF, Suhr helped the Knights record three 20-win seasons and earn two trips to postseason tournaments.
Ten years ago, Suhr also founded Coaching U, a coaching, leadership and learning company, that is a technology and live event business that focuses on individual and team development. He also is a consultant to the National Basketball Players Association serving to help current and retired players in the areas of coaching and leadership. Additionally, he authored the book “Chuck Daly Coaching U.”
He also was the head scout for the gold-medal United States “Dream Team” at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games and the assistant coach for two NBA All-Star Games (1988, 1990).
During his time in the NBA, Suhr assisted Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame coaches Chuck Daly, Hubie Brown and Lenny Wilkens. He also coached Hall of Famers Adrian Dantley, Joe Dumars (a Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame member), Dennis Rodman, Isiah Thomas and Dominique Wilkens. Suhr coached in over 2,500 NBA games, beginning in 1979 with a nine-year stint with the Atlanta Hawks. He assisted in Detroit from 1988-92, the New Jersey Nets for two seasons (1992-94), the Toronto Raptors (1997) and the Orlando Magic (1997-99).
Suhr served as VP/Director of Player Personnel for Detroit in 1999-2000 and then was an assistant coach the following season. His final NBA stop was from 2004-07 as Assistant Coach/Director of Player Personnel for the New York Knicks.
For nine seasons, he served as the Vice President of the NBA Coaches Association.
Suhr also has experience in the Continental Basketball Association, serving as president, general manager and head coach of the Grand Rapids Hoops from 1995-97. He also co-owned the franchise for three years. Suhr, who was recognized as the CBA’s Coach of the Year in 1995-96, worked as the league’s executive vice president of basketball operations and industry relations.
Suhr began his coaching career in college as an assistant at the University of Detroit before moving to Fairfield University. He spent five seasons at Fairfield and earned his master’s degree in education administration in 1979. Suhr played at Montclair State, where he received his undergraduate degree in 1973.
Suhr, a native of Fair Lawn, New Jersey, and his wife, Brenda, have two children, BK and Christina, an LSU graduate and now Doctor of Veterinary Medicine in Denver.
The Suhr File
Name: Brendan Suhr
Birthdate: April 28, 1951
Hometown: Fair Lawn, N.J.
Education: Montclair State (’73); Fairfield (’79, master’s)
Children: BK, Christina
College Coaching Experience
1973-74: Assistant Coach, Detroit
1974-79: Assistant Coach, Fairfield
2010-12: Director of Program Development, UCF
2012-13: Assistant Coach, UCF
2013-15: Director of Program Development, UCF
July 2015-17: Associate Coach, LSU
Professional Coaching Experience
1979-88: Assistant Coach, Assistant GM, Atlanta Hawks
1988-92: Assistant Coach, Detroit Pistons
1992-94: Assistant Coach, New Jersey Nets
1995-97: Head Coach, Grand Rapid Hoops (CBA)
1997: Assistant Coach, Toronto Raptors
1997-99: Assistant Coach, Orlando Magic
2000-01: Assistant Coach, Detroit Pistons
2004-07: Assistant Coach, New York Knicks