Gonzaga's Few Gets Inaugural USA Basketball Assignment
May 27, 2009
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Gonzaga University head men's basketball coach Mark Few is one of six coaches selected to serve as court coaches for the 2009 USA Basketball Men's U19 World Championship and World University Games team trials, USA Basketball today announced.
Few will be joined by Mike Anderson of the University of Missouri, John Beilein of the University of Michigan, Johnny Estelle of Navarro College, Alan Magnani of Iowa Wesleyan College and Herb Sendek of Arizona State University.
This is Few's inaugural assignment with USA Basketball. In his 10 years (2000-09) as head coach of Gonzaga, Few has taken the Bulldogs to the NCAA Tournament each season, including four trips to the Sweet Sixteen, including this past season. Over those 10 seasons, Gonzaga has posted a 264-66 record (.800 winning percentage).
"To be involved with USA Basketball is a great honor," said Few. "I'm looking forward to the experience of being a part of something that represents our country. I think it will be a great experience. I will have the opportunity to work with some of the outstanding players at the collegiate level and to exchange ideas and philosophies with some of the best coaches in the game."
Few has spent his entire collegiate coaching career with Gonzaga, and the Bulldogs have posted a 433-140 record (.756 winning percentage) since he became a fulltime assistant coach with Gonzaga. He served as a graduate assistant during the 1989-90 and 1990-91 seasons before becoming a fulltime assistant for eight seasons between 1991-92 and 1998-99.
Gonzaga has won the West Coast Conference (WCC) regular-season title in nine out of 10 years with Few as head coach. While Few was an assistant, Gonzaga won four WCC regular season championships. The Bulldogs also have won eight of 10 WCC Tournament championships with Few at the helm.
The USA trials will be held June 16-18 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. The selected court coaches will work with the approximately 40 athletes vying for spots on the 2009 USA U19 World Championship and 2009 USA World University Games teams.
The 2009 FIBA U19 World Championship for Men will be held July 2-12 in Auckland, New Zealand, featuring 16 national teams comprised of athletes 19-years-old or younger (born on or after Jan. 1, 1990). Included in the field of nations are: Angola, Argentina, Australia, Canada, Croatia, Egypt, France, Greece, Iran, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Spain, Syria and the USA.
University of Pittsburgh head coach Jamie Dixon was named head coach of the 2009 U19 World Championship Team. Chris Lowery of Southern Illinois University and Matt Painter of Purdue University will serve as assistant coaches.
The World University Games is a multi-sport competition organized by the International University Sports Federation and held every two years. The 2009 men's basketball competition will take place July 2-12 in Belgrade, Serbia. Participants must be between 17 and 24 years old and either a current college student or have attended a college or university within the past year.
University of Wisconsin head coach Bo Ryan has been tabbed head coach of the 2009 World University Games Team.
Below are biographies of the other five court coaches who will join Few.
This is Anderson's first assignment with USA Basketball. Anderson and Missouri had a breakout season in 2008-09, compiling a 31-7 overall record, the most wins in school history. The Tigers won the Big 12 Tournament Championship, earned a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament and advanced to the Elite Eight. The tournament appearance was the Tigers' first since 2002-03, and their 12-4 mark in conference play was also the best in school history. For his accomplishments, Anderson was named the National Association of Basketball Coaches Co-Coach of the Year.
"This is certainly a great opportunity to get involved with USA Basketball," Anderson said. "For anyone affiliated with basketball here in the United States, it's a dream to represent your country and help your national program." In his first year (2006-07) with Missouri, Anderson led his team to an 18-12 record, greatly improving from the previous season when the Tigers went just 12-16.
Prior to coming to Missouri, Anderson spent four seasons (2002-03 to 2005-06) at the University of Alabama-Birmingham. In 2004 he earned Conference USA Coach of the Year Honors after leading UAB to a 22-10 record and Sweet Sixteen appearance that included an upset win over No. 1 seeded Kentucky. Anderson compiled an 89-41 record (.685 winning percentage) while at UAB including trips to the NCAA tournament his last three seasons.
Anderson was a long-time assistant to Nolan Richardson before becoming a head coach, spending three seasons under Richardson at the University of Tulsa (1982-83 to 1984-85) and 17 seasons with Richardson at the University of Arkansas (1985-86 to 2001-02). In his time at Arkansas, the Razorbacks racked up 12 20-win seasons, four 30-win seasons, three Final Four appearances and the 1994 NCAA National Championship.
Anderson played college basketball for two years (1978-79 and 1979-80) at Jefferson State Junior College, and then attended and played two seasons (1980-81 and 1981-82) at the University of Tulsa under Richardson.
Beilein, who is undertaking his first USA Basketball coaching assignment, has 31 years of experience as a head coach at the Division I level. In that time he has racked up 582 career wins, placing him in the top 20 in victories among active Division I coaches.
"I am pleased and honored to be selected to assist with USA Basketball this summer," said Beilein. "I really look forward to this experience with great anticipation. The opportunity to contribute to USA Basketball, work with our games finest coaches, while teaching and coaching our nation's top players is a privilege."
Most recently in 2008-09, Beilein led Michigan back to the NCAA Tournament where they advanced to the second round, finishing with a 21-14 record.
Before coming to Michigan, Beilein spent five seasons at West Virginia University, compiling a 104-60 record while making two trips to the Sweet Sixteen (2005, 2006) and a trip to the Elite Eight in 2005.
Beilein has been successful in each of his seven head coaching positions. He has been a head coach at Erie Community College (1978-79 to 1981-82); Nazareth College (1982-83); LeMoyne College (1983-84 to 1991-92); Canisius College (1993-94 to 1996-97); and the University of Richmond (1998-99 to 2001-02). In those five stops, Beilein compiled a 447-258 record (.634 winning percentage).
Beilein played college basketball at Wheeling College from 1971-75 and served as team captain during his junior season.
Estelle enters his first USA Basketball coaching assignment after completing his first season as head coach at Navarro College (Texas) in which his team went 25-11. Navarro won the Region XIV conference tournament championship and advanced to the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) national tournament. For his accomplishments, Estelle was named Region XIV Coach of the Year.
"This is a great honor for me to be able to assist with the selection process of the USA Basketball Men's U19 World Championship and World University Games teams," said Estelle. "I have always been intrigued with USA Basketball and this opportunity to help my country is one that ranks high in terms of my personal accomplishments as either a coach or player. I am looking forward to having a good experience, having fun, and developing relationships for a lifetime."
Prior to being head coach, he spent eight seasons as an assistant coach at Navarro under NJCAA Hall of Fame coach Lewis Orr. In his time as an assistant, Navarro made six Region XIV tournament appearances, four Region XIV tournament semifinal appearances and two Region XIV tournament finals.
Estelle played college basketball at Missouri Valley College (1992-93) and Northland Pioneer College (1993-94) before transferring to Texas A&M University-Kingsville, where he played for two seasons (1994-95 and 1995-96). He helped the team to consecutive Lone Star Tournament finals appearances in 1995 and 1996, winning in '96, and was selected to the conference all-tournament team both years, earning the MVP award in the '96 tournament.
Estelle was a student assistant coach at Texas A&M University-Kingsville (1996-97 to 1997-98), a graduate assistant there in the 1998-99 season and an assistant coach at Northland Pioneer College for the 1999-00 season.
Magnani, who is taking on his first assignment with USA Basketball, has spent 13 seasons (1996-97 to 2008-09) as head coach at Iowa Wesleyan College, where he is the program's all-time leader in career wins (207), wins in a season (25), career winning seasons (6) and national tournament berths (3). In 2008-09, he led IWC to a 20-11 record and the Midwest Collegiate Conference (MCC) Tournament Championship, which qualified them for the NAIA Division II National Tournament.
"I am definitely honored to have this opportunity to work with such a prestigious organization as USA Basketball, and I am looking forward to working with the best college basketball players in the country," said Magnani. "I would like to thank Jim Carr and Scott McClure from the NAIA, and Sean Ford from USA Basketball for this fantastic opportunity."
IWC posted three consecutive 20-win seasons from 2002-03 to 2005-06, with Magnani being named MCC coach of the year in 2003 and 2004. In 2005-06, the Tigers finished the season 25-7, setting the Iowa Wesleyan record for most wins in a season. They won the MCC Tournament and advanced to the NAIA Tournament for the second time in three years, having also went in 2004.
Magnani joined the Tigers in 1995 as an assistant coach under Dave Tremmel after successful coaching stints in Iowa and Nebraska at the high school and college levels. He served as the top assistant at NCAA Division II Wayne State College for the 1993-94 season, and was the Athletic Director at Ainsworth High School for one year before taking the job as an assistant with Iowa Wesleyan. Magnani served on the NABC-NAIA Board of Directors from 2005 to 2009 and was chairman of the NAIA D-II Men's Basketball National Tournament in 2007 and 2008.
Sendek recently completed his third season with Arizona State University, in which the Sun Devils went 25-10 and reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament. This is Sendek's first coaching assignment with USA Basketball.
"I am excited to begin work with such an outstanding organization in USA Basketball which has done an incredible job of promoting and growing the game," said Sendek. "The work it has done with all of our national teams is outstanding. While many will point to the Olympic teams, college coaches across the country know that USA Basketball puts an incredible amount of work into all its teams, many of them that help our current collegiate players succeed. I am thrilled to be a part of the U19 program and look forward to the opportunity."
Before arriving at ASU, Sendek spent 10 seasons (1996-97 to 2005-06) with North Carolina State University. During that time, the Wolfpack went 191-132 (.591 winning percentage) with five NCAA Tournament appearances and a Sweet Sixteen appearance in 2005. Sendek was named the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Coach of the Year for the 2003-04 season after guiding the Wolfpack to an 11-5 conference record and second place finish in the ACC.
Before becoming a head coach, Sendek was an assistant under Rick Pitino for three seasons at Providence College (1986-87 to 1988-89) and four years at the University of Kentucky (1989-90 to 1992-93). He has been to two Final Fours, both as an assistant coach. The first was with Providence in 1987 and the second with Kentucky in 1993. Sendek's first head coaching job was with Miami University (Ohio), where he compiled a 63-26 record (.708 winning percentage) over three years (1993-94 to 1995-96). In 1994-95 he was named the Mid-American Conference (MAC) Coach of the Year after guiding Miami to a 23-7 record, the MAC regular season championship and a trip to the NCAA second round.
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