Drew Richards - UNC Pembroke
The record breaking assistant has enjoyed developing both preseason player of the year candidates and the stat sheets alike in both the JUCO and DII spaces. Limiting points by the opponent is the focus each season and this years best start in school history is no different.
Zane Gibson - Arkansas Fort-Smith
No longer an up and comer, the more experienced, hands on Gibson has the political IQ to match his basketball savvy. He can play the game well; instructing on the court, from the bench, in the office, and in the community. Still young, he has lots more to accomplish.
Rodney Clarke - Lake Superior State
The player developer and defensive extraordinaire jumps from NAIA to DII by joining the team at LSSU. HC Steve Hettinga has a knack for identifying talented players who fit his system and this coaching hire is no different. Make no mistake, High School, NAIA DII, or DI this guy can coach with the best of them and may be just the guy to get LSSU back to that March 15th game.
Mike Annese - Truman State
In year two, Annesse helped Truman State to one of the most successful seasons in program history making a tournament appearance for the first time in eleven years. Moreover, the highly successful 2016-2017 season saw record setting progress in literally every single offensive and defensive category.
Justin Caldwell - California Pensilvania
Well known throughout their region, Caldwell arrives with expectations to assist the Vulcan’s to championships while developing all conference players. Just like he has done his entire career. The perfect fit for a struggling team, his offensive mind continually finds ways to disrupt a defense and achieve upset after upset.
Jason Owens - Pittsburg State
He may be new to the DII level but he is no stranger to coaching. At Moberly (JUCO) he assisted in Regional and District titles, sweet 16, and sending an outstanding twenty-four players to DI or DII levels. With DI staff and coaching experience, as well as NAIA coaching, developing All-Americans has been a steady theme throughout his career.
Krayton Nash - Minnesota Crookston
His winning culture was first instilled as a player on the Bo Ryan led 1999 DIII championship team from Wisconsin-Platteville. Today that culture includes 163 wins at the NAIA and DIII levels. Add to that his Prep success placing 31 players to four year colleges; half of whom went DI. He could be the guy to turn things around.
Jordan Courneya - Point Loma
Transitioning from NAIA to DII his overall experience at PLNU, has reached the conference or regional playoffs 10 of his 12 seasons including the team’s first wins at nationals since the ’57-’58 season. Voted 22nd in the NABC poll (’14-’15) he raised the stats to national recognition in multiple shooting categories.
Julious “juco” Coleman - Biola
A familiar face on our ranking jumps from the top NAIA assistant in the country to land among the best in DII. But most importantly, he does so the right way; not by jumping ship, but elevating the entire program with him. Coleman truly epitomizes everything a coach should be.
Aaron Huffman - West Liberty
Serving double duty as assistant and athletic director, it’s evident that his impact extends beyond the court. The ten year, high valued, coach brings a wealth of athletic, academic, and administrative experience to the position from DII and DIII levels in both the men and woman’s game.
Chris Grove - West Texas A&M
Developing an LSC Player of the Year and NABC All-American as a sophomore is a unique talent (Chavlovich). It speaks to his understanding of DII basketball that began with winning championships for Winona State back in 2006. He has elevated the Buffs from a solid 18 win team to a commanding 20 plus conference leader year in year out.
Justin Furr - Barry
The direct correlation between Furr’s efforts and team success is easy to see. Furr manages player development, instruction, and recruiting. Since taking on those roles, Barry has been producing SSC Player of the Year, First Team selections, All-South Region and NABC All-South District honors non stop.
Marquintus Jones - Limestone
The cornerstone of Limestone, Jones is responsible for several 20-plus win seasons, the program’s first ever Conference Tourney Championship, and the first NCAA DII berth in school history. He also coached seventeen All-Conference Carolinas selections, All-Americans, and All-Southeast Region choices.
Grant Leonard - Queens U of Charlotte (NC)
In the first four years, ten of his recruits garnished all-conference and first-team honors. He delivered the regionals to their own gym as the one seed advancing to the Sweet 16. Achieving the highest national ranking in program history, and the best start in program history, Leonard continually proves how he has maintained a long term career in college coaching.
Drew Williamson - Virginia State
In his three years coaching the Trojans they have had three consecutive winning seasons and increased their win totals each year. Primarily working out the guards and taking on recruiting, he helped land and develop five all-conference performers, CIAA Tournament MVP, and a Defensive Player of the year.
Justin Wieck - Minnesota State Moorhead
Mr Intangible guided Jamestown (ND), Northern State (SD), and Minnesota Morehead to regular season and tournament titles. The 2013-2014 COY mentored numerous players along their way to all-everything honors. He even has experience on the big stage from Iowa as a staffer for both Alford and Lickliter (’07-’10).
Micky Burtnyk - Merrimack
Selected to finish second-to-last this past season, his leadership and coaching ability took center stage resulting in a tournament berth and an at-large selection to the NCAA Tournament where they continued to exceed expectations advancing out of the regional quarterfinals as an eight seed.
Mike Makubika - Florida Southern
While he hangs his hat on defense, Makubika also ensures quality in the classroom with ten players named to the SSC Commissioner's Honor Roll and three more named to the prestigious NABC Honors Court. Add to that the thirty-fourth nationally ranked scoring offense; its easy to see this is a complete coach.
Jimmy Langhurst - LeMoyne
A DII National Championship veteran coach (IUP) Langhurst took his talents to develop an up and coming Dolphin team in 2015. Three years later, his vision and uncanny ability to identify the early signs of potential have paid off big time. Today LeMoyne ranks among the nations top 25 DII teams thanks in no small part to his efforts.
Chad Hettermann - Augustana (SD)
The Vikings next-in-line-head coach, Hettermann served as player, GA, and now assistant. His ten straight winning seasons include 34 wins two years ago, and already nearly 100 wins plus in his young, overall career. He witnessed a national title, NSIC Championships and more. The stats have elevated to reflect next level performance, while his players have received every ‘Of The Year’ honor possible.
Marcus "Chief" Bryant - Eckerd
Eight years stalking the sidelines of the court he spilled his own sweat on as a player, the successful recruiter and skills coach has been able to speak directly to what it takes to win in that arena and all of DII. Still, his biggest win is reflected in the multiple NABC Honor Roll players and team GPA exceeding 3.2.
Brad Schick - Colorado School of Mines
HC Orser got the ball rolling sixteen years ago and elevated to next level the last eleven after hiring Schick. The duo have built a regional powerhouse. Without a single losing season in ten consecutive years, in route to an elite eight, Schick has earned too many accolades to list here. Please visit his school bio for more.
Chris Reisman - Tarleton State
Son of the HC, Chris specializes in detail, organization, and management. A great coach in his own right, he has a win record of 80% with much of the credit for that going to his defense. Elite Eights and Final Fours have become the standard as well as producing All-Americans players.
Lorenzo Neely - Wayne State
Through twenty years of college coaching from DI to DII, from the Midwest to the West Coast, the results have remained consistent. He has mentored several NBA and professional over seas players, brought in top five national recruiting classes, all while emphasizing skill development, scouting, evaluation, game preparation.
Tae Norwood - Lynn
From NCAA (all levels) to NAIA, From Vermont, to New York, to Michigan, to Pennsylvania, to Tennessee, to Georgia, to Louisiana, to Florida this guy has been everywhere cultivating a strong network in the business. Not to mention his ability to recruit ceaselessly no matter what the space. Norwood takes all his teams to new heights recruiting players a level above.
Balanced by a wide scope of basketball, administrative, community and other responsibilities, these coaches excel in the stat sheets, developing their players, meeting their lower level limitations and succeeding despite them.