Jake Schroeder said there was one high school job in Utah that would lure him from his post as an assistant basketball coach at Dixie State.
Schroeder landed that one job last week, when he was named the boys’ coach at Bingham, the school where he starred and graduated from more than a decade ago.
"Bingham’s got a special place in my heart," said Schroeder, who played football and basketball for the Miners and graduated in 1999. "It would have taken something special to leave St. George, and Bingham was it.
"I’m excited, a little scared. Definitely humbled. I feel pretty fortunate to get the offer and look forward to running with it."
Schroeder, who played basketball at Snow College and Portland State, has spent the past seven years as an assistant to Jon Judkins at Dixie State.
Schroeder said he expects the Miners will play an up-tempo, "fun" style of basketball. He replaces Mark Dubach, who resigned after seven seasons and one state championship at Bingham.
Bingham athletic director Brad Bevan said Schroeder was chosen from among 34 applicants for the position.
Alta hires girls’ coach
Alta announced this week the hiring of Sean Yeager as the girls’ basketball coach.
Yeager won 44 games over the past two seasons at Sheridan High in northeastern Wyoming.
"Alta, coaching-wise, is an opportunity that you don’t pass up," Yeager said. "When people asked [new UCLA coach] Steve Alford why he was leaving New Mexico, he just said because it’s UCLA. Plus we love Utah and love what the community has to offer our family."
Yeager replaces Kristi Jensen, who stepped down after nine seasons as coach. Yeager inherits a back-to-back Region 3 championship team that graduates just three seniors this spring.
Alta principal Fidel Montero said what set apart Yeager from the position’s other six finalists was his experience and success on the court, as well as how well he was respected by former colleagues.
"After speaking to people who worked with him in Idaho and Wyoming, I learned he is someone who builds young people and will be an advocate for them," said Montero, who screened more than 20 applicants. "He will build on what we have and be a support to our student-athletes."
Yeager, a Corona del Mar, Calif., native who has family throughout Utah, said he loves coaching the sport on both the boys’ and girls’ side. He teaches health and physical education at Sheridan, and he will be part of a new Youth in Custody unit, working with students whose custody is controlled by the state.
"To me, basketball is a vehicle for teaching life skills," Yeager said. "Coaching is about building relationships and really about helping young boys or girls in life."
Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.