Bobby Lutz wants to coach college basketball again, and he’s enthusiastic about that opportunity.
As a head coach, Lutz led the Charlotte 49ers to five NCAA Tournament appearances, and he more recently reached four more as a member of N.C. State’s staff. After coaching with the Windy City Bulls of the NBA’s developmental league, Lutz has spent this season out of coaching and living in the Lake Norman community where he grew up.
The 59-year-old has played some golf, watched high school games throughout the Charlotte area and consulted college programs such as the Oregon Ducks, the Tennessee Volunteers and the South Dakota State Jackrabbits, who are also filling a line in this year’s tournament bracket.
And for the first time in a very long time, Lutz filled out a bracket himself. His pick? He’s sticking with what he thought in the preseason: Arizona is the team to beat.
Citizen: Why did you step away from coaching this year?
Bobby Lutz: I’ve never been a guy who’s looking for a job while I do my job. I wanted to kind of regroup and this consulting thing kind of fell in my lap. But the main reason I did it was so that this time of year, I could actively pursue jobs and not feel bad about. That’s what I’m doing.
Citizen: So what’s the year been like?
Lutz: What it’s taught me is I still have a lot of life left. I feel like I have something to give to a program and to young people. I’m reinvigorated. I’m excited about getting back with a team. I’ve missed that, although I wouldn’t change what I’ve done. It was definitely the right thing to do at this time.
Citizen: What’s the ideal job look like for you?
Lutz: It’s just got to feel right for me. The level is not the most important thing. …There are a lot of variables, but the main variable is it’s got to feel right and be right for my wife (Janet) and I at this point in our lives – the people that I’m working for, the fit of the school, does my coaching style fit, etc.
Citizen: How competitive are you?
Lutz: I’m still almost embarrassed how much I hate to lose at anything. If that ever turns off, it’ll probably be time to retire. If we play a little golf game, and if we don’t say we’re playing for anything, I can play for fun. But if we say we’re playing for a nickel, I’m trying to win as hard as I possibly can. I hate to lose.
Citizen: How will you spend this weekend?
Lutz: I’ll be watching games, no doubt about it.