Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Canisius Inks Parrotta for Two More Years

There's nothing worse for a college basketball program to have its coach go into a "lame duck" season, i.e. enter a season on the last year of his contract. And, now, Canisius coach Tom Parrotta won't face that situation.

Parrotta signed a two-year contract extension (no financial terms revealed) that will keep him as the Golden Griffins’ head coach through the 2012-13 season.

“Under Tom’s leadership, the men’s basketball program at Canisius has made steady progress and he has done a great job of recruiting and developing the young men in our program,” athletic director Bill Maher said in a press statement released by the school. “The growth and improvement of the student-athletes in our program has been outstanding and has positioned us very well for future success. I look forward to continuing to work with Tom and his staff as they lead our program toward the ultimate goal, winning a MAAC men’s basketball championship and earning a bid to the NCAA Tournament.”

Parrotta helped guide Canisius to a 15-17 overall record and an 8-10 mark in MAAC play in 2009-10, with the eight leagues wins standing as the most for the program since 2004-05. Since taking over the program prior to the 2006-07 campaign, Parrotta has guided the Griffs to a MAAC Tournament win in each of the last four seasons, a claim only conference rivals Siena and Rider can boast. The 15-win season in 2009-10 marked just the 13th time in the last 50 years that the team had 15 victories over Division I programs in the same campaign, and the Griffs’ 7-5 record at home was the program’s first home winning record since 2004-05.

After a 6-25 overall record in the 2007-08 season, Canisius improved to 11 victories in 2008-09 and 15 this past season.

“I am excited and proud to be continuing the development and success to this program,” Parrotta said, in the school's press release. “We are on the cusp of great things here at Canisius."

The Griffs will return four starters and eight letterwinners to next year’s team. Parrotta’s first recruit, Frank Turner, wrapped up his eligibility at the end of the 2009-10 season and will leave the College ranked as the school’s career leader in assists, games played and minutes played, while ranking among the top-10 at Canisius in seven other statistical categories.

Among the returning players for next year’s team, rising seniors Julius Coles and Greg Logins are on pace to join the program’s 1,000-point club, while classmate Tomas Vazquez-Simmons, the school’s career blocked shot leader, is on pace to join the top-five on the MAAC’s all-time blocks list. The program has also made strides in the classroom, as all five members of the Class of 2011, including Elton Frazier and Robert Goldsberry, will start next season working toward their master’s degrees at the College.

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