Providence College President Reverend Kenneth Sicard, O.P. and Vice President/Athletics Director Steve Napolillo announced today (September 6) that Ed Cooley has agreed to a multi-year contract extension to remain head coach of the men’s basketball program.
“Providence is my home and Providence is where I want to be,” Providence College Men’s Basketball Coach Ed Cooley said. “Not many coaches are able to live the dream of coaching in their hometown and I feel blessed every day that I have this opportunity. I have had the good fortune of working for great administrators and coaching some of the best players in the country. I believe in the leadership at Providence College and with that I want to thank Fr. Sicard and Steve Napolillo for allowing me to continue my career in Friartown. The support that our donors and fans have shown toward our program has grown to new heights over the last 11 years. We had a special season in 2022, and I am excited as we look ahead to this season and the opportunity to compete for another BIG EAST title.”
Cooley, who earned Naismith Coach of the Year honors, guided the Friars to a 27-6 mark in 2022. Cooley also was named National Coach of the Year by The Sporting News and The Field of 68. His team, which earned the highest seed ever for the Friars (No. 4 seed), advanced to NCAA Sweet 16 where the squad was defeated by eventual national champion Kansas, 66-61, on March 25. It marked the sixth time overall and the first time in 25 years (1997) that the Friars reached the Sweet 16. The Friars’ 27 victories are tied for the second highest single-season win total in the history of the program. The 27 wins also marked the sixth time in his 11 seasons at Providence that his team earned 20 or more victories. Cooley also led the Friars to a 16-1 record at home, which is the squad’s best mark since 1973-74 (16-0).
In March, Cooley was named BIG EAST Coach of the Year. He became the first Friar coach to earn that honor. In BIG EAST league play, the Friars set a team record for wins after registering a 14-3 mark and capturing the program’s first BIG EAST Regular Season title. The Friars, who finished the regular season in first place, were picked to finish seventh in the annual BIG EAST Preseason Coaches’ Poll which was released in October. Providence did not have a player selected to the All-BIG EAST First Team. Cooley became just the seventh coach, and first since 2012, to earn BIG EAST Coach of the Year honors without having a player earn All-BIG EAST First Team accolades. The Friars also won a team-record eight consecutive BIG EAST games this season.
“Ed Cooley is such an inspirational member of our College community,” Providence College President Fr. Kenneth R. Sicard, O.P., said. “There is widespread agreement that he is an excellent basketball coach as underscored by his recent recognition as the Naismith Coach of the Year. But he is so much more than that to our Friar family. Ed is fully engaged in the depth and breadth of the Providence College mission and the daily life of the College. We are so very pleased with and grateful for his continued commitment to PC, and this contract extension is, in turn, our commitment to him that we will continue to support him and the men’s basketball program to the highest degree.”
“In all great relationships there is a commitment to support each other at the highest level,” Providence College Vice President/Athletics Director Steve Napolillo said. “This contract extension is an example of the commitment to Ed, the program, and his family as we strive to reach our goal of winning BIG EAST and national championships together. Ed has shown he is the perfect fit as a coach and an ambassador for Providence College. He and his wife, Nurys, and his family are part of the Friar community. I look forward to working with Coach Cooley for many years to come.”
Cooley, who is entering his 12th season at Providence, has posted a 221-141 mark during his time with the Friars. He ranks second all-time in wins at Providence. Cooley also coached for five seasons at Fairfield (2006-2011) and registered a 92-69 mark. In 16 seasons as a head coach, he has posted a 313-210 record, which includes six NCAA Tournament appearances and two NIT selections at Providence. His 2014 Friar squad captured the BIG EAST Tournament title.
Prior to becoming the head coach at Fairfield, Cooley spent nine seasons at Boston College as an assistant coach under Al Skinner.