USA Basketball also announced today that collegiate head coaches Bruiser Flint of Drexel University (Pa.) and George Washington University's (D.C.) Karl Hobbs will serve as assistant coaches for the USA U19 National Team. Coaching staff selections were made by the USA Basketball Men's Collegiate Committee, chaired by USA Senior National Team assistant and Syracuse University head coach Jim Boeheim, and approved by the USA Basketball Executive Committee.
The 2007 FIBA U19 World Championship will be contested July 12-22 in
Novi Sad, Serbia. The draw for the tournament was held on Feb. 27, and
the United States was placed in Group B for preliminary round action
along with China (FIBA Asia gold medalist), Mali (FIBA Africa silver
medalist) and host Serbia (FIBA Europe fifth place finisher).
"In all honesty it's a great honor," said Wainwright. "I've been
privileged to work with two other programs in USA Basketball. Last
summer I had a wonderful experience with our under 18 team working with
head coach Lorenzo Romar and assistant Paul Hewitt. It's an incredible
privilege to wear your country's name on a uniform. At this point in my
career it's certainly a highlight to be a representative of USA
Basketball and I hope I can live up to the past coaches and what they've
"Bruiser Flint and Karl Hobbs are both obviously beyond being up and
coming stars. They're already stars but they're young guys, and I was
fortunate enough to know them as players. Their energy level, their
commitment to excellence and the fact that they've always had tremendous
relationships with their players will help us establish a family
atmosphere. They're also two of the most competitive people I've ever
met. They're winners and I'm extremely humbled that they're going to be
co-coaches alongside me."
"It's a natural progression for Jerry, he was an assistant last summer
for our very successful U18 team," said Boeheim. "Some of the players
will return and are familiar with him, so it's a natural progression for
him to move up and take the reigns. I think he'll do an outstanding job
with the team this year. In Bruiser Flint you have a proven head coach
who's been involved with USA Basketball teams in the past, has great
international experience and is coming off another tremendous coaching
year at Drexel. Karl Hobbs is one of the bright young coaches in college
basketball. He's had tremendous success at George Washington and has
international coaching experience. He brings a lot to the table and will
be a tremendous addition to the coaching staff."
The U.S. earned its 2007 FIBA U19 World Championship berth by claiming
gold at the 2006 FIBA Americas U18 Championship. The 2007 USA squad will
be comprised of males 19-years-old or younger (born on or after Jan. 1,
1988) who are citizens of the United States.
In addition to the USA's pool, included among the 16 national teams that
qualified through their FIBA zone tournaments are Brazil (FIBA Americas
bronze medalist), France (FIBA Europe gold medalist), Lebanon (FIBA Asia
bronze medalist) and Lithuania (FIBA Europe silver medalist) in Group A;
Group C consists of Australia (FIBA Oceania gold medalist), Canada (FIBA
Americas fourth place finisher), Nigeria (FIBA Africa gold medalist) and
Turkey (FIBA Europe fourth place finisher); while Group D includes
Argentina (FIBA Americas silver medalist), Puerto Rico (FIBA Americas
fifth place finisher), South Korea (FIBA Asia silver medalist) and Spain
(FIBA Europe bronze medalist).
The USA U19 National Team Trials, featuring approximately 35 of the
nation's top 19-and-unders, will begin June 28 in Dallas, Texas.
In 13 seasons as a head collegiate coach (1984-85 to present),
Wainwright has amassed a career record of 218-173 (.558 winning
percentage). This selection marks his third tour with USA Basketball as
he also served as a court coach during the 2004 USA Basketball Men's U20
National Team Trials.
"I think we're talking about two different variables added to the mix,"
said Wainwright. "We had the comfort level last year of playing on our
home soil, minimal travel and the food were things we were use to, and
that gives you a little bit more relaxed atmosphere. It allows your
kids, especially the young kids, to be able to focus on the task at
hand, which is winning the tournament. Now you're throwing in the fact
that we're not going to be the home team, in every game we're going to
be looked at as the team to pull against as far as the crowd is
thinking. Because of that we're going to have to be at a different level
than we were last summer and especially as it pertains to our mental
toughness and our togetherness. The challenge of that, plus the fact
that instead of it just being a tournament against the Americas, we're
bringing in teams from all over the world that have probably stayed
together for at least a year. Whereas our team probably won't be the
same that we had last summer. You now have a worldwide event and as we
know, on foreign soil, it's going to be a tremendous challenge for our
kids. Hopefully we look at that as not only a challenge, but something
we really want to be a part of. Hopefully the kids that ultimately try
out and make the team will have a great sense of conviction and also
believe that they're doing something not only for themselves but for USA
Wainwright Receives Commitment
WeAreDePaul.com has learned that Mario Stula, a 6-7, 210 lb. senior shooting guard from Decatur Christian Prep School and originally from Croatia, signed his letter of intent to play for the DePaul Blue Demons on Tuesday.
WeAreDePaul.com subscribers can learn more about Stula in the following premium stories…
Stula Makes It Official
Wainwright to Lead USA Men's U19 Hoops Team
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