A familiar face in the city of Chicago will be back -- and recruiting the city of Chicago and suburbs.
Bradley head coach Geno Ford took a positive step forward in the rebuilding of the once very proud basketball program by hiring Ronald "Chin" Coleman as an assistant. Coleman replaces former Bradley assistant Willie Scott, who resigned to become a head high school coach at Dyett in Chicago.
Coleman spent the 2011-2012 season as an assistant at Colorado State. When CSU head coach Tim Miles took the Cornhuskers job, Coleman came to Lincoln with Miles and was most recently Nebraska's Director of Player Development. Now he will have a chance to be back out on the road recruiting as an assistant, gaining valuable experience as he continues to climb the coaching ladder.
The up-and-coming assistant was anxious to get back on the road, utilizing the connections he's established.
"For me, it was a no-brainer when this opportunity arrived," Coleman said of the job at Bradley. "I'm from Chicago and there is a history there between Bradley and Chicago. And being from here I know that history and tradition. It's such a great history and they have unbelievable support there."
With strong ties to both the Mac Irvin Fire club program and the Chicago Public League, Coleman will bring an instant present day tie between Bradley and basketball in the city of Chicago. Coleman graduated from South Shore 20 years ago and coached at Whitney Young, where he was part of the staff that won a state title in 2009.
Now it will be part of Coleman's job to help re-energize Bradley basketball as one of Ford's assistants. He wants to get the word out.
"I see it as like a street pastor on corner preaching," says Coleman. "I want to preach the gospel of Bradley basketball. I want to help make everyone aware of what Bradley has to offer and do whatever coach Ford needs in doing that."
Bradley currently has one Chicago Public League prospect on the roster in former Julian star Walter Lemon, a 6-3 guard who averaged 12.6 points a game last season as a sophomore. Coleman, however, will instantly get Bradley involved with several players in the Class of 2014 as the Braves look to establish a pipeline to Chicago and suburbs.
It has been a rough go of it for Bradley the past couple of years. In the past two seasons under former coach Jim Les and one year under Ford, the Braves are a combined 19-45 and a dismal 6-30 in the Missouri Valley Conference.
"There is so much to offer at Bradley with their fan support, the new facilities it has in place and all a head coach in Geno Ford who does it the right way," says Coleman. "Bradley is a basketball school. It plays in a great basketball league in the Missouri Valley. I can't wait to get started."
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