WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — Wichita State University officially introduced Paul Mills as its newest head coach for the Shockers men’s basketball program. The school made the announcement on Wednesday.
An introductory press conference welcomed Mills to the program with flashing lights, music and fanfare. You can watch the event in the player below:
“We are not timid about this process,” Mills said during the event. “We know people expect to win, and I can assure you that my entire family expects to win, too. We could not be more excited about this opportunity.”
Mills has spent the past six years rebuilding the program at Oral Roberts, earning bids to two of the last three NCAA tournaments.
Mills said his first goal in regard to recruiting will be the current roster. Right now, two Shockers are in the transfer portal who have not yet found a new home. Kenny Pohto, one of the main pieces of last year’s team who entered the transfer portal last week, was in attendance Thursday.
“People are the most important thing,” Mills said. “And to be able to help these guys achieve their dreams is the goal and my motivation behind why I do this.”
Mills also talked about the fan support from the WSU faithful.
“People are also important inside Koch Arena,” Mills said. “Having been here a few times, I understand the decibel levels that gets because I was on the wrong side of those games, and the people here, the passionate fanbase, the rich history, the winning tradition, made this a no-brainer for my family and I.”
Prior to Oral Roberts, Mills was an assistant coach at Baylor for 14 years. Mills actually helped coach the Bears against the Shockers twice, once inside Charles Koch Arena and once in Waco. Both times, the Shockers came away victorious.
In 2021, Mills became just the second coach in history to guide a No. 15 seed to the round of 16, upsetting Ohio State and Florida in the first two rounds.
This past season he coached ORU to a 30-5 record, an undefeated run through the Summit League (18-0) and a No. 12 seed in the Big Dance.
Mills is currently a finalist for the Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year award as well as the NABC’s Skip Prosser Man of the Year honor, presented annually to a coach who achieves success on the basketball court and displays moral integrity off of it.