Boys Basketball

Former Mascoutah basketball coach Scott Oltmann returning to guide Indians

Longtime Mascoutah High boys basketball coach Scott Oltmann is about to begin his second tour of duty with the Indians.

Oltmann, who compiled a 278-175 record as Mascoutah’s coach from 1993 to 2010, was hired Tuesday night in a vote by the school board. His first coaching run included 10 Mississippi Valley Conference championships and regional titles in 1996, 1999 and 2007 before he resigned in 2010.

The Indians also won 20 or more games nine times. Oltmann, a physical education teacher at Mascoutah, is a 1978 Mascoutah graduate who played for longtime Indians coach Roger Thouvenin.

“Mascoutah’s in my blood,” said Oltmann, who is 55 and still had been coaching on the football staff at Mascoutah . “I played here and coached here and I grew up in the community. I guess I never really wanted to get out. The five-year break has stoked the fire again and I’m really looking forward to it and hoping to help get things back on track here.

“I think the fire’s still there and I’m looking forward to getting going again.”

Oltmann replaces Cody Reynolds, who resigned recently after five seasons and a record of 53-119. Mascoutah Athletic Director Scott Battas said there were several attractive applicants for the head coaching position and four finalists were interviewed before the decision was made to hire Oltmann.

“In my opinion I felt like his resume kind of stood apart from the other with what he’s been able to accomplish at Mascoutah,” Battas said. “We had some candidates from the outside that were really intriguing, but at the end of the day Coach Oltmann had a lot of things that led to him having this opportunity. He’s re-energized and excited about it, for sure.

“He was always on my radar and when we met as a committee and interviewed the finalists, he stood apart. We’re really excited about having him back.”

Oltmann is familiar with the conference and its coaches and says there is a good young talent at Mascoutah.

“I wanted to give it one more shot and once I started thinking about it, I got fired up and the juices got flowing again,” he said. “I’m really excited about it.”

During his break from basketball coach, Oltmann enjoyed watching his son, former Mascoutah guard Alex Oltmann, play and that helped keep him in touch with the game. Alex Oltmann now plays baseball at St. Charles (Mo.) Community College.

Battas said the transition should be made easier because of Oltmann’s familiarity with the players and the program and his position as a physical education teacher in the district.

“Cody did a good job with what he had and really worked hard every day,” Battas said. “We feel like we have an opportunity now to take what Cody left us with as a young group and kind of mold them into what Coach Oltmann will want to see from a program standpoint. It’s going to be a fresh start with a good young group and a strong group coming in on the lower levels.”