Coach Bio

Gary Kloppenburg
College - UC San Diego
Gary Kloppenburg will enter his second year as Head Coach of the Tulsa Shock in the 2013 season. He was named the Head Coach of the Tulsa Shock on January 4th, 2012 and he guided the Shock to its best record since the team relocated to Tulsa, Oklahoma in 2010.

He was re-united in the WNBA with Lin Dunn, when he joined the Indiana Fever staff in 2008 where he worked 4 seasons. He served on Lin’s staff for three seasons with the Seattle Storm from 2000-02. He was instrumental in helping build one of the top defensive teams in the WNBA in a successful stint that included four straight playoff appearances by the Fever.

Regarded for his expertise on the defensive end of the floor, Kloppenburg was on the staff of the NBA’s Charlotte Bobcats where he served under head coach Bernie Bickerstaff for three seasons from 2004-05, 2005-06 and 2006-07. He was hired by Bickerstaff when the Bobcats were founded as an expansion team in 2004 – continuing a family bond established when Bickerstaff was in college, and strengthened when Gary’s father Bob coached in the NBA with Bickerstaff in Seattle and Denver.

Kloppenburg has coached at virtually every level of college and professional basketball, ranging from his beginnings in the California Community College ranks to stops in the NBA, WNBA, Continental Basketball Association and internationally.

Prior to joining the Bobcats’ staff as an assistant coach and advance scout, he was an assistant with the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury for one season after three years with Dunn in Seattle. He worked as a west coast advance scout for the NBA’s Toronto Raptors from 1997-99 after two seasons as an assistant coach and assistant director of player personnel in the CBA – first with the Rockford Lightning and then for the Quad City Thunder. Kloppenburg was the interim head coach for four games in 1999-2000 with the Rockford Lightning where he coached former NBA star Earl Boykins.

In the summer of 1999, he was Head Coach for Panteras de Miranda of the Venezuelan Professional League, where he led them to a runner-up finish. He has conducted basketball clinics throughout the world including England, Greece, Belgium, Iceland, Japan, and China.

After graduating from UC San Diego in 1981 with a degree in Spanish Literature, his coaching career began at Lassen Community College (Calif.) where he had successful stints as head coach with both the men’s and women’s teams. He guided the women’s team for five seasons, including back-to-back California Community College State Championships in 92-93 before taking over the men’s program for six. Kloppenburg has three children, Sonja, Ian and Carlotta.

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