WEDNESDAY, MARCH 02, 2011
Jacksonville’s Cliff Warren and St. Mary’s Randy Bennett Named Assistant Coaches For 2011 USA Basketball Men’s U19 World Championship Team
Randy Bennett of St. Mary’s College (Calif.) and Cliff Warren of Jacksonville University today were named assistant coaches for the 2011 USA Basketball Men’s U19 World Championship Team, USA Basketball announced.
Including USA Men’s U19 and Georgia Tech head coach Paul Hewitt, the trio will lead the USA in the 2011 FIBA U19 World Championship June 30 – July 10 in Liepaja and Riga, Latvia. The coaching selections were made by the USA Basketball Men’s Junior National Team Committee and approved by the USA Basketball Board of Directors.
“It is a privilege to work with an organization as respected as USA Basketball,” Bennett said. “I'm looking forward to representing the USA in competition this summer. I want to contribute to the coaching staff in any way I can. It's an honor to be selected, and I'm looking forward to working with the coaches, players and everyone involved.”
“I am very thankful and honored to get this opportunity to assist Coach Hewitt and represent our country in the FIBA U19 World Championship,” Warren said.
While both Bennett and Warren will undertake their first USA Basketball coaching assignment, Bennett gained USA Basketball experience as a court coach during the 2010 USA Basketball Men’s U18 National Team Training Camp.
“Randy and Cliff are both successful college coaches who will bring enthusiasm and tremendous basketball knowledge to the USA Men’s U19 World Championship Team,”said Jim Boeheim, Syracuse University Hall of Fame head coach and chair of the USA Basketball Men’s Junior National Team Committee.
The 2011 FIBA U19 World Championship will feature 16 nations. The preliminary round will be contested June 30 – July 2 in a round-robin format, with the game schedule still to be announced. The USA has been drawn into Group D, along with China, Egypt and Serbia, and will play the preliminary round in Liepaja, along with Group C, which includes Canada, Croatia, Lithuania and South Korea. Group A, which will play in Valmiera, features Brazil, Poland, Russia and Tunisia; and Group B, also competing in Valmiera, includes Argentina, Australia, host Latvia and Taiwan.
Originally known as the FIBA Junior World Championship, the tournament was held every four years between 1979-2007. FIBA now conducts the U19 Championship every two years. USA men’s teams are 62-11 in the U19/Junior World Championships and have won four gold and three silver medals, most recently earning the gold medal with a 9-0 record in 2009.
The 12-member 2011 USA Men's U19 World Championship Team will be selected by USA Men’s Junior National Team Committee during the team’s training camp, which is scheduled for June 16-23 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. Only athletes born on or after Jan. 1, 1992 are eligible.
Chaired by Boeheim, the USA Men’s Junior National Team Committee also includes Lorenzo Romar (University of Washington head coach), Bruce Weber (University of Illinois head coach), Roy Williams (University of North Carolina head coach) and athlete representative Jay Williams (member of the 2002 USA World Championship, 2000 USA U20, 2000 USA Select and 1999 USA Junior National Select teams).
Currently in his sixth season as head coach at Jacksonville, Warren’s 2010-11 Dolphins have compiled a 19-10 record and secured a berth into the Atlantic Sun Conference (A-Sun) Tournament.
As of March 2, Warren had amassed a 91-90 overall record (.503 winning percentage) with JU.
Finishing 1-26 in his first season in 2005-06, Warren quickly turned the program around. Over the past four years, JU has produced four winning seasons – the second-longest streak of winning campaigns in program history.
Warren twice has led the Dolphins to the National Invitational Tournament (NIT). Following a first-round loss in the 2009 NIT, a 67-66 win over Arizona State in the first round of the 2010 NIT gave the Dolphins their first postseason win since 1974. He won his first regular season A-Sun Championship after an 18-14 finish in 2008-09 and his second a year later with a 20-13 finish in 2009-10, making JU the first program in the modern era of college basketball to win a conference title within three years of winning one game or less. It also marked the program’s first 20-win season since 1986.
Warren also has advanced to the A-Sun Tournament championship game in two of the past three seasons, making JU’s first appearance in the title game since 1989.
He earned conference Coach of the Year honors from Collegeinsider.com in 2007, while also being named a finalist for the Hugh Durham Mid-Major Coach of the Year Award and the Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year Award. After winning the league title in 2009, Warren was honored by his peers as the A-Sun Coach of the Year.
During his career as an assistant coach, including 11 seasons overall and stints at his alma mater Mount St. Mary's (1994-95 through 1996-97), Siena (1997-98 through 1999-2000) and Georgia Tech (2000-01 through 2004-05), Warren helped his teams to the postseason eight times, with five NCAA Tournaments and three NIT appearances.
Before taking over at JU, Warren spent five seasons as an assistant to Hewitt at Georgia Tech, where he helped lead the Yellow Jackets to 96 wins, three NCAA Tournaments and one NIT. In 2004, Warren helped lead the Yellow Jackets to a 28-10 record and the school's first-ever trip to the NCAA national championship game, where Tech lost to Connecticut.
Warren was a two-year starter for the Mount St. Mary’s Mountaineers, where he finished his career ranked in the top five in assists. As a senior in 1989-90, he averaged 10.4 points and 5.0 assists per game, while leading The Mount to its first winning season in Division I (16-12).
Before returning to Mount St. Mary's as an assistant coach in 1994, Warren played professionally for the Frederick Flyers of the Atlantic Basketball Association. Midway through the season, he was named assistant coach. He also worked as an intern for the NBA's Washington Wizards in 1993-94.
He earned his bachelor of science in business finance from Mount St. Mary's in 1990 and then worked as a graduate assistant coach and earned a master of business administration in 1993.
Based in Colorado Springs, Colo., USA Basketball is a nonprofit organization and the national governing body for men's and women's basketball in the United States. As the recognized governing body for basketball in the United States by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Basketball is responsible for the selection, training and fielding of USA teams that compete in FIBA sponsored international basketball competitions, as well as for some national competitions.
Since 2008, USA Basketball men’s and women’s teams have compiled a sterling 96-2 win-loss record in FIBA or FIBA Americas competitions. USA teams are the current men’s and women’s champions in the Olympics, FIBA World Championships; U19 and U17 FIBA World Championships; and U18 and U16 FIBA Americas championships. USA Basketball currently ranks No. 1 in all five of FIBA's world ranking categories, including combined, men's, women's, boys and girls.
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