MCALLEN, Texas, August 18, 2015 – The Houston Rockets and NBA Development League affiliate Rio Grande Valley Vipers today announced the hiring of Matt Brase as head coach of the Vipers. Brase becomes the sixth head coach in franchise history.
Brase rejoins the Rio Grande Valley Vipers after two seasons as the Director of Player Development for the Houston Rockets. Brase previously served as an assistant coach for the Vipers during the 2012-13 season.
As Rockets Director of Player Development, Brase focused on the players’ individual and system skill development on the court, as well as video for individual players.
Brase helped lead the Vipers to the team’s second NBA Development League Championship during the 2012-13 campaign as an assistant coach. The championship squad compiled a franchise-best 35-15 record and won its final 10 regular-season games before sweeping the playoffs 6-0. The winning streak continued into the 2013-14 season where the Vipers set a league record 19-game win streak. Including the 2013 playoffs, the Vipers won 25 straight games.
While with the Vipers, Brase assisted with the Vipers offense and was instrumental in player development. Six players received a total of seven GATORADE Call-Ups during the 2012-13 season and Andrew Goudelock received MVP honors. Brase was also responsible for individual player development and opponent preparation.
Prior to joining the Vipers, Brase spent the 2011-12 season as part of the Rockets basketball operations staff, where he focused on player personnel and scouting college, international and NBA players.
From 2009-11, Brase served as an assistant coach at Grand Canyon University. While with the Antelopes, he earned a master’s degree in business administration with a focus on leadership.
Brase was a member of the 2003-04 and 2004-05 Arizona Wildcats men’s basketball squads, where he played for his grandfather, Lute Olson. In his two seasons, the Wildcats went 50-17 overall and 26-10 in the Pac-10 Conference. He earned a degree in business management from Arizona.
Following graduation, Brase spent two seasons as the Wildcats’ administrative assistant and video coordinator. He was promoted to assistant coach and helped lead the Wildcats to a 21-13 record during the 2008-09 campaign.
Arizona advanced to the NCAA Tournament during each of Brase’s seasons with the team – two seasons as a player and three seasons as a member of the staff. As a player, he reached the Elite Eight in 2005. As an assistant coach, his team reached the Sweet 16 in 2009.
Before transferring to Arizona, Brase played two seasons at Central Arizona College in Coolidge. The team earned a berth to the 2001-02 NJCAA National Tournament.