Eastern Michigan Men’s Basketball Staff Update

Eastern Michigan University Head Men’s Basketball Coach Stan Heath announced a trio of coaching additions today, May 11, to finalize his staff heading into the 2021-22 season. The Eagles will welcome Bob Simon, Shawn Trice, and Drew Denisco as the assistant coaches of the men’s basketball program. 

Simon, an EMU alum, possesses more than 25 years of collegiate coaching experience, including more than a decade as a Division I associate head coach. 

Simon has amassed a wealth of highly successful Division I coaching experience, having served on the staffs at Siena College (2019-21), the University of Maine (2017-18), the University of Alabama (2015-17), Providence College (2011-15), Fairfield University (2006-11), and the University of Toledo (2000-06), in addition to a nine-year stint at Division II Wayne State University (1991-00).

Prior to his arrival in Ypsilanti, Simon spent the last two seasons at Siena and helped guide the Saints to a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Regular Season Championship and MAAC Tournament title. Siena posted a 20-10 overall record in 2019-20 including a 15-5 mark in conference play, while posting a perfect 14-0 record at the Times Union Center and ending the season on a 10-game winning streak. 

Simon aided in the development of MAAC Player of the Year Jalen Pickett, and fellow First Team All-MAAC selection Manny Camper. Serving as the team’s offensive coordinator, Siena led the MAAC in field goal percentage (45.9 – 64th nationally), scoring margin (+4.5), and scoring offense (72.2), while it also ranked 67th nationally in three-point field goal percentage (35.5).

During his two-year stint in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Simon helped guide Alabama to back-to-back NIT appearances as the associate head coach under former NBA coach Avery Johnson. Simon assisted in recruiting the No. 5 ESPN ranked incoming recruiting class in the nation to UA in 2017. In his first season at Alabama, the Crimson Tide broke a school record for threes made (259) and threes attempted (763), while also toppling four top-25 ranked teams for the first time since 2002.
“Bob is someone who I have worked with in the past. He is an experienced coach who has been in the MAC, Big East, SEC, and most recently the MAAC,” Heath said. “Bob is a tireless recruiter with ties in Michigan and the Midwest. His basketball knowledge and work with the student-athletes will be a valuable asset to our program.”

Trice has over 15 years of collegiate coaching experience, including a 13-year stint at Temple University. 

Trice spent the 2020-21 season at Colgate College as an assistant coach, where he helped guide the Raiders to a 14-2 overall record with a 11-1 Patriot League mark. Colgate earned its fourth NCAA Tournament berth in program history last season. Trice aided in the development of All-Patriot Player of the Year Jordan Burns, and three All-Patriot honorees in Nelly Cummings (second team), Tucker Richardson (third team), and Jeff Woodward (rookie team). 

The Raiders led the nation in three-point field goal defense with a 26.4 percentage. Colgate also ranked second in the NCAA averaging 85.2 points per game and third with a 40.3 three-point percentage.

Prior to his arrival to Hamilton, N.Y., Trice spent 13 seasons as an assistant coach at Temple, where he helped guide the Owls to seven NCAA Tournaments, five conference titles, and two NIT bids. During his tenure in Philadelphia, Trice helped Temple claim 10 winning seasons, including nine 20-win campaigns.

Coaching under the all-time winningest head coach in Philadelphia Big 5 history, Fran Dunphy, Trice aided in the development of Temple’s frontcourt players, including Lavoy Allen, a 2011 second-round pick by the Philadelphia 76ers. He helped Allen become the program’s all-time leading rebounder and one of only three Temple players to register 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds. Besides Allen, Trice has helped develop several former student-athletes currently playing professionally overseas.

“Shawn is a veteran coach, originally from Detroit. I have always been impressed with Shawn as a Temple assistant coach,” Heath said. “Coaching and recruiting against Temple was always a challenge. I have a lot of respect for Fran Dunphy and his program with Shawn being a big part of it. Shawn’s work on the court with our big’s and his x’s and o’s knowledge will be a valuable benefit to our program. He is also a very experienced recruiter.”

Denisco has spent the last six seasons as the video coordinator for the Michigan State University men’s basketball program. A native of Worthington, Ohio, Denisco assisted the coaching staff in breaking down game and practice video to create individual player edits for the Spartans along with opponent scouting materials.

Denisco spent three seasons as a seasonal video assistant coordinator with the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers, where he worked under the direction of former Spartan manager Dan Vincent.

Prior to joining the Cavaliers, he spent two seasons at the University of Akron, serving as graduate manager and then video coordinator while completing a master’s degree in sport administration (2012). He spent one year as a graduate manager at Cleveland State University in 2009-10.

“Drew is a young upcoming assistant, who has spent time at the college level with Michigan State and in the NBA with the Cleveland Cavaliers,” said Heath. “His experience in video technology, scouting, and skill development will add tremendous value to our program.”


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