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Matt Piper and Kyle Goon cover University of Utah sports teams for The Salt Lake Tribune. Matt Piper is on twitter at @matthew_piper, Kyle Goon is on twitter at @kylegoon

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Former Ute star Alex Jensen becomes D-League coach

Former Utes star Alex Jensen has been hired as the head coach of the Canton, Ohio, D-League NBA affiliate, the Cleveland Plain-Dealer reported Tuesday.

Jensen, who led Utah to the 1998 NCAA championship game, spent the last four seasons as an assistant under Rick Majerus, his former coach now at St. Louis University. Jensen reportedly turned down an opportunity to join Larry Krystkowiak's staff at Utah in the spring.

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"Alex is a great fit for our team and organization and what we want to develop and accomplish in Canton," Canton general manager Wes Wilcox said in a statement. "He has a very successful and diverse background that is rooted in strong defensive principles and learned from one of the best coaches and basketball teachers in college basketball in Rick Majerus."

The Canton team is in its first year in the D-League and is the affiliate of the Cleveland Cavaliers. According to the Plain-Dealer, it is expected to get a name and logo in the next week.

In a statement, Jensen was thankful to Majerus.

"(He) has taught me so much, first as a player and later as a coach on his staff," Jensen said. "He is one of the best in basketball and I will always be very grateful for the many, many things I have learned from him."

— Bill Oram

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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