LITTLE ROCK — Arkansas head coach Eric Musselman has turned to a familiar face in Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach Clay Moser to complete his Razorbacks staff, it was announced Saturday.
Moser was a scout for the Golden State Warriors (2002-03) and Sacramento Kings (2006-07) when Musselman was head coach at both NBA organizations. Moser also served on Musselman’s staffs with the Dominican Republic national team (2010-11) and the Los Angeles D-Fenders of the NBA Development League (2011-12).
Moser joined Lakers head coach Byron Scott’s staff in September 2014, and a year later Moser was promoted to Assistant Coach / Director of Basketball Strategy — a title he’s held for the last four seasons with the Lakers.
“Clay and I have worked together in the NBA, with the Golden State Warriors and Sacramento Kings, and in the NBA Development League with the Reno Bighorns and Los Angeles Defenders,” Musselman said. “We also worked together with the Dominican National Team. Clay is an incredible ‘X and O’ coach and he has been at the forefront of basketball analytics. He loves player development and brings the NBA experience that our players look for and will soak up.”
Moser said he is excited and anxious to reunite with Musselman at Arkansas
“I’m excited to get to Arkansas,” Moser said during a Friday interview. “I’m excited to get there with Muss, excited to get back to my college coaching roots.
“Arkansas has great fans, great tradition, and a great future under Muss. Fans will love him, and his and their energy will feed off each other. It’s a great opportunity to be a part of it, and I’ll be there early next week.”
Moser — his 32-year coaching journey began as an assistant under Hall of Fame coach Jim Valvano at North Carolina State (1987-89) — joins associate head coach Chris Crutchfield (hired May 17) and assistant coach Corey Williams (hired April 24) to form a trio of Hog assistants with multiple layers of NBA and college playing and coaching experience.
“We’ve all got different kinds of (NBA and college) experience, and we’ll all bring a different look at it,” Moser said. “We’ll all bring something to the table. Muss obviously has that advantage, too.”
Now that all three assistants are on board, the remainder of Musselman’s Arkansas staff can soon be sorted out. Musselman brought Anthony Ruta and Hays Myers with him from Nevada, and both are expected to be retained in administrative roles within the men’s basketball program. Musselman’s son, Michael Musselman, was a graduate assistant last season at Nevada and just completed a master’s degree there, and now he is expected to join the Hogs’ staff in some capacity as well.
The timing of Moser’s hire comes just three days before the Razorbacks — 10 scholarship returnees and 4 scholarship transfer-newcomers — report back to Fayetteville on Monday. Summer classes begin at Arkansas on Tuesday.
Known for his basketball analytics savvy, Moser’s career at the professional ranks included roles as a head coach (Continental Basketball Association and NBA D-League); assistant coach (NBA and CBA); basketball operations including consulting, executive, and business development positions (NBA and CBA); and scouting (NBA and CBA).
“Analytics is a big buzz word in all of sports,” Moser said. “The key is you’ve got to figure out what makes sense and then make it work. I’ve always referred to (analytics) like accounting: You can make the books say anything, but at the end of the day you’ve got to understand the reality and trust your eyes.”
Moser’s head coaching experience was with the Great Lakes Storm of the CBA (2003-04) and the Rio Grande Valley Vipers of the NBA D-League (2008-09). In addition to his scouting positions under Musselman at Golden State and Sacramento, Moser served as a scout for the Orlando Magic (2007-08).His international experience included a stint as a coach and consultant with the Jilin Northeast Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association (2004-05). His basketball operations / executive experience included serving as Vice President of Business Development for the New Orleans Hornets (2005-06). He was also at one time Senior Vice President and Vice President of Basketball Operations for the CBA.
Moser graduated from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse in 1987.