Allegheny College men’s basketball coach Bob Simmons has announced the hiring of Brian Urso as the team’s assistant coach.
A native of Fox Chapel, Pennsylvania, Urso arrives at Allegheny with a wealth of coaching experience, having most recently served as an assistant at Division-II national power Indiana University of Pennsylvania, while having also worked collegiately at Chatham University, and at various high schools throughout the Pittsburgh area.
“I am extremely excited to be a part of the Allegheny basketball family,” said Urso, “and to help continue to build the culture that Coach Simmons has established over the last two years. I feel that my passion and enthusiasm for the game of basketball will carry over to our players, and in return will increase our success on the floor.”
“I am proud and excited to welcome Brian and his family to Allegheny College and our men’s basketball family,” said Simmons. “I have gotten to know Brian over the past few years, and have been impressed with his character and professionalism, along with his passion for, and knowledge of, the game of basketball. He has experience at both the Division II and III levels, which will be great for our men. He has been a part of a winning culture at the Division II level, and helped build a Division III program from the ground up.”
At IUP, Urso was responsible for all day-to-day operations of the men’s basketball team, including the coordination of team travel, development of preseason and practice schedules, academic monitoring, and preparation of video scouting reports. The 2016-17 Crimson Hawks finished 28-4 overall and 21-1 in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference, eventually reaching the NCAA Division II Round of 32.
Prior to his time at IUP, Urso worked at Chatham University from Sept. 2014 – Aug. 2016 as assistant men’s basketball coach, assistant athletic director, sports information director, and NCAA compliance officer. He was the first assistant men’s basketball coach in Chatham University history, as the Cougar men made their on-court debut in 2015-16, and helped build the program from the ground up, as he was responsible for coordinating all recruiting, which resulted in 37 commitments in two years. During the team’s first season of play, Urso assisted with all daily operations of the program under head coach Andrew Garcia, while his administrative duties as SID and assistant AD included serving as on-site administrator for home contests, compiling and distributing all statistics, training and supervising gameday personnel, and assisting in the development and execution of department-wide recruitment and promotional events and activities.
From 2009-16, Urso worked as director of the Pittsburgh Nets AAU basketball organization, one of the largest AAU basketball programs in the region consisting of teams with players in grades 4-11. In addition to managing the program’s overall budget, he developed rosters, organized schedules, hired all coaches, scheduled all practices and tournaments, coordinated sponsorships, and directed a yearly tournament consisting of over 90 teams annually. During his time with the Nets, Urso also aided in the recruitment of the program’s players with Division I, II, and II programs from across the region.
In addition to his collegiate and AAU experience, Urso also has a wealth of high school coaching experience in the Pittsburgh suburbs. He spent two seasons at both Pine Richland High School and Shady Side Academy as the varsity assistant and head junior varsity coach, while he was also a varsity assistant and head JV coach for the Fox Chapel High School girls program for one year, and assistant varsity and head ninth grade coach for the Fox Chapel boys for one season.
He’s also worked various basketball summer camps, including the Duke University Summer Camp in 2015, the Hoop Group Bob Hurley Camp in 2014, and the Hoop Group Elite and Academic Elite Camps.
Urso graduated from Point Park University in 2009 with a bachelors degree in elementary education. He and wife Karlie are the proud parents of daughter Regina.
“I want to thank all of the applicants for their interest in the position,” said Simmons, “as the quality of applicants was very strong and deep to choose from. I also want to thank everyone who helped with the search process. Sam Avery took care of the travel arrangements, while Portia Hoeg, Mandy Prusia, Bill Ross, Jason Andracki, Victoria Pless, and Gabby Holko all met with the candidates and showed them what we have to offer.”