CONCORDIA, Kansas — Cloud County Community College officially welcomed the fifth head coach in the men's basketball program's 51-year history Tuesday evening as the Cloud County Board of Trustees approved the hiring of Jordan Altman.
For Altman, who has spent much of his life between Omaha, Nebraska and Manhattan, Kansas, the move to Concordia serves as a homecoming of sorts and an opportunity to cross off one of his longstanding aspirations.
"Since I started this career path, being a head coach at a (NJCAA Division I) junior college in Kansas has been the goal," Altman said. "Cloud County was probably the best place for me in Kansas. It's hard to put into words my excitement and the opportunity is really a dream come true… This is the pinnacle I see at the junior college level."
In addition to an ideal location, Altman said the community, the college and the athletic department all exhibited qualities and values that match his personality.
"Cloud County is a place that shares a lot of the values I have as a coach. I felt right from the beginning that my values matched a lot of what Cloud County wanted from its athletic department," Altman said. "There is a sense of community and dedication here to do right by the student-athlete."
Altman comes to Concordia after spending two seasons as an assistant at Garden City Community College, where he helped the Broncbusters to records of 18-14 overall in 2015-16, and 16-15 overall this past winter in a tight Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference (KJCCC).
This will be the second head coaching stint for Altman during his young career. He spent three seasons (2012-15) at Grays Harbor (Wash.) College, compiling a record of 24-54, while leading a turnaround of a program that had gone 4-88 during the four seasons prior to his arrival.
Altman is now tasked with retooling a T-Birds team that graduated eight sophomores and went 20-11 this past season, finishing fourth in the KJCCC standings under Chad Eshbaugh, who is now an assistant at Jacksonville University.
"It will start with recruiting, obviously. There is almost a limit on what development you can do at this level because you're going to have a kid, at most, about 18-20 months," Altman said. "We need to find people right away with some skills and talent, and create a team atmosphere."
As of Tuesday, Altman said there is room for 4-5 more players before the T-Birds finalize a roster for the 2017-18 season.
The philosophies and the style of play Jordan brings to Cloud County will be similar to those championed by his father, Dana Altman, the nationally renowned men's head basketball coach at the University of Oregon.
"At this level, you have to play fast and loose," Altman said. "I'm an aggressive coach. I look for ways to attack our opponents rather than determining ways our opponents are going to attack us. We'll always want to be the aggressors."