Friday, 28 June 2013

M. Basketball. Tom Abatemarco Joins Lions

June 17, 2013

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LOS ANGELES - LMU Head Men's Basketball Coach Max Good has announced the hiring of Tom Abatemarco as an assistant coach to the Lions' program, bringing with him more than 40 years of coaching experience at the professional and collegiate level.

"Tom and I have known each other a long time and I am very excited to have him join our staff," said Good, who enters his sixth season at the helm of the Lions in 2013-14. "He brings to our program a wealth of knowledge and experience, and it will be difficult to keep up with him as he will bring a lot of energy to everything we do."

Abatemarco has spent the last three seasons with the University of Colorado, his second stint with the Buffaloes. In three seasons on Tad Boyle's staff at CU, the Buffaloes posted back-to-back 24-win seasons in 2010-11 and 2011-12, and a 21-win season a year ago. They are coming off back-to-back NCAA tournament berths for the first time in 60 years.

"This is an opportunity for me that I really like, I've known Max for many years and I think LMU could be a sleeping giant in the West Coast Conference," said Abatemarco. "Dr. William Husak, LMU Athletic Director, has been tremendous to me. It's going to be exciting and a challenge for me, and I think great things can happen here at LMU. I can't wait to get going with this program."

In 2011-2012, Abatemarco helped CU earn its first NCAA Tournament appearance in nine years, upsetting No. 6 UNLV in the second round and advancing to the third round. At the inaugural Pac-12 Conference tournament, the Buffs became just the 10th team in the nation to win at least four games in four days to capture the tournament title (a CU first since winning the Big 8 in 1968-69).

"First of all, I want to thank Coach Boyle for the great opportunity to be on his coaching staff for three years, I had a lot fun," said Abatemarco. "I also want to thank (CU Chancellor) Dr. Phil DiStefano and (former CU Athletic Director) Mike Bohn for everything they did, and most of all, our players, they were terrific. The players that I came in with or were already here, Alec Burks, Cory Higgins and the players that I helped recruit, it's been a great run and a lot of fun."

Before arriving to Boulder, Abatemarco served a brief stint with the Sacramento Kings as a player personnel and scouting coach. In addition, he spent seven years as a broadcaster with the Kings. Abatemarco also served as an assistant coach for the Reno Bighorns of the NBA Development League (NBDL) during its inaugural 2008-09 season, helping the team to a 25-25 record.

"Tom is known as a very good recruiter and is very well respected where ever he goes," said Good. "He also has a vast knowledge of the game and he will really help in the development of our players."

His time with the Kings wasn't the first time he was in Sacramento, as he served as an assistant coach in the WNBA with the now-defunct Sacramento Monarchs from 2003-09.

In those six years with the Monarchs, he guided the team to the 2003 WNBA Western Conference Finals, a feat they would reach again in 2004, before winning a championship in 2005. The Monarchs would again reach the WNBA Finals in 2006, falling in the championship series.

Before making the transition to the WNBA, Abatemarco spent the previous 30 years on various college campuses as an assistant or head coach.

Abatemarco was the head coach at Sacramento State from 1997-2000, and also coached two campaigns as an NCAA Division I head coach at Lamar University (1986-88) and Drake University (1988-90).

His college coaching experience also includes stints at the University of Utah (2004-05) and Rutgers University (1994-97) after he spent three seasons at CU under Jim Harrington from 1991-94. Prior to taking the head coaching positions, Abatemarco served as assistant at North Carolina State from 1982-86 when the Wolfpack won the 1983 NCAA Championship under the late-Jim Valvano.

Additional coaching experience includes stints at Virginia Tech (1981-82); at Maryland under Lefty Driesell (1979-81); under Lou Carnesecca at St. John's (1978-79); Davidson (1977-78); Iona (1975-77); and the New York Institute of Technology (1974-75).

As an assistant coach, Abatemarco enjoyed nine NCAA Tournament appearances, five Elite Eight appearances (two with Maryland & N.C. State, one with St. John's), and a trio of NIT appearances (Colorado - twice, Virginia Tech).


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