HoopDirt.com 2020-21 NAIA Coach of the Year presented by Just Play Solutions

For Immediate Release
April 8, 2021

image.pngShawnee State University Head Basketball Coach Delano Thomas has been named as the HoopDirt.com NAIA Coach of the Year presented by Just Play Solutions for the 2020-21 college basketball season. Thomas qualified for the award by being named as the HoopDirt.com/Just Play Solutions Coach of the Week for Week 7 of the college basketball season.
Coach Thomas guided Shawnee State to a 31-2 record this season, closing out the campaign on a 27-game winning streak that culminated in the program’s first-ever NAIA National Championship. After falling to 4-2 on December 3rd, the Bears did not lose again, going unbeaten for over three and a half months and picking up many firsts along the way.
Thomas’ squad began the season unranked in NAIA Coaches’ Top-25 Poll, and exceeded expectations in every way. The Bears easily surpassed the previous program-record of 22 wins in a season, and captured their first ever Mid-South Regular Season and Tournament Championships. 
In his four years at the helm, Coach Thomas has overseen a total turnaround of the Shawnee State Men’s Basketball Program, as he led the Bears to their first winning record in conference play since the 2002-03 season just last year. After going 28-33 in his first two seasons with Shawnee State, Thomas has compiled a record of 52-13 since. 
This is the 6th season that HoopDirt.com has named an NAIA Coach of the Year. Previous recipients can be found below, as well as all of this season’s Coach of the Week winners.

Previous HoopDirt.com Coach of the Year Award Winners:

Division I

Division II

Division III


  • 2020-21: Delano Thomas – Shawnee State University (OH)
  • 2019-20: Colby Blaine – College of Idaho
  • 2018-19Chris Briggs – Georgetown College (KY)
  • 2017-18Craig Doty – Graceland University (IA)
  • 2016-17: Kevin Burton – Union College (KY)
  • 2015-16: Larry Cordaro – LSU-Alexandria



2020-21 HoopDirt.com / Just Play Solutions Coach of the Week Winners

Week 1

NCAA DI: Mark Few – Gonzaga University
NCAA DII: Jeff Horner – Truman State University (MO)
NCAA DIII: Clif Carroll – University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (TX)
NAIA: Greg Tonagel – Indiana Wesleyan University
JUCO: No week 1 winner awarded

Week 2

NCAA DI: Mike Magpayo – UC Riverside
NCAA DII: Brian Good – Wingate University (NC)
NCAA DIII: No week 2 winner awarded
NAIA: Dugan Lyne – Martin Methodist College (TN)
JUCO: No week 2 winner awarded

Week 3

NCAA DI: Lamont Paris – Tennessee Chattanooga
NCAA DII: Mike DeGeorge – Colorado Mesa University
NCAA DIII: Neal Young – Covenant College (GA)
NAIA: Chris Dial – Our Lady of the Lake University (TX)
JUCO: No week 3 winner awarded

Week 4

NCAA DI: Chris Collins – Northwestern University
NCAA DII: Chad Warner – Flagler College (FL)
NCAA DIII: No week 4 winner awarded
NAIA: Danny Neville – University of Jamestown (ND)
JUCO: No week 4 winner awarded

Week 5

NCAA DI: Bryan Mullins – Southern Illinois University
NCAA DII: No winner – mandatory DII winter break
NCAA DIII: No week 5 winner awarded
NAIA: Mark Svagera – Briar Cliff University (IA)
JUCO: No week 5 winner awarded

Week 6

NCAA DI: Frank Haith – University of Tulsa
NCAA DII: Vinay Patel – Northwestern Oklahoma State University
NCAA DIII: No week 6 winner awarded
NAIA: Will Shouse – Asbury University (KY)
JUCO: No week 6 winner awarded

Week 7

NCAA DI: Shaka Smart – University of Texas
NCAA DII: Dan Ficke – Belmont Abbey College (NC)
NCAA DIII: Reni Mason – Louisiana College
NAIA: Delano Thomas – Shawnee State University (OH)
JUCO: No week 7 winner awarded

Week 8

NCAA DI: Isaac Brown – Wichita State
NCAA DII: Bubba Smith – Lee University (TN)
NCAA DIII: Damion Jablonski – Whitworth University (WA)
NAIA: Chris Wright – Talladega College (AL)
JUCO: No week 7 winner awarded

Week 9

NCAA DI: Tony Pujol – University of North Alabama
NCAA DII: Blake Flickner – Dallas Baptist University
NCAA DIII: Bill Sall – Calvin University (MI)
NAIA: Kyle Blankenship – LSU Shreveport
JUCO: Jeff Reinert – College of Southern Idaho

Week 10

NCAA DI: Lon Kruger – University of Oklahoma
NCAA DII: Kelvin Jefferson – Gannon University (PA)
NCAA DIII: Clay Nunley – Roanoke University (VA)
NAIA: Ryan Wall – Texas A&M – Texarkana
JUCO: Luke Strege – Mineral Area College (MO)

Week 11

NCAA DI: Dennis Gates – Cleveland State
NCAA DII: Johnny Estelle – Texas A&M Kingsville
NCAA DIII: Brooks Miller – Trine University (IN)
NAIA: Josh Gamblin – Mid-America Christian (OK)
JUCO: Brandon Giles – Polk State College (FL)

Week 12

NCAA DI: Scott Davenport – Bellamine University
NCAA DII (Co-Winner): Todd Eisner – Winona State University (MN)
NCAA DII (Co-Winner): Mike Helfer – Valdosta University (GA)
NCAA DIII: Bill Fenlon – DePauw University (IN)
NAIA: John Teasley – Stillman College (AL)
JUCO: Pete Pena – Pensacola State College (FL)

Week 13

NCAA DI: Casey Alexander – Belmont University
NCAA DII: Tobin Anderson – St. Thomas Aquinas College (NY)
NCAA DIII: John VanderWal – Marietta College (OH)
NAIA: Justin Newton -Reinhardt University (GA)
JUCO (Co-Winner): Bryan Bender – Southwest Mississippi CC
JUCO (Co-Winner): Matt Ridge – Davidson-Davie CC (NC)

Week 14

NCAA DI: Mike Boynton – Oklahoma State
NCAA DII: Ben McCollum – Northwest Missouri State
NCAA DIII: Scott Coval – DeSales University (PA)
NAIA: Marcus “Chief” Bryant – Keiser University (FL)
JUCO: Chris Parker – Arkansas State Mid-South

Week 15

NCAA DI: Todd Simon – Southern Utah University
NCAA DII: Brett Ballard – Washburn University (KS)
NCAA DIII: Aaron Greiss – Augsburg University (MN)
NAIA: John Henry – William Penn University (IA)
JUCO (Co-Winner): Joseph Eatmon – Shelton State College (AL)
JUCO (Co-Winner): Steve Green – South Plains College (TX)

Week 16

NCAA DI: Rick Pitino – Iona College
NCAA DII: TJ Rosene – Emmanuel College (GA)
NCAA DIII: Ron Rose – Illinois Wesleyan University
NAIA: Steve Drabyn – Bethel University (IN)
JUCO: Mark Leslie – Trinity Valley CC (TX)

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HoopDirt.com is the largest website in the country dedicated specifically to college basketball coaching news, jobs, and rumors at all levels. HoopDirt.com brings a unique insider perspective to the world of college basketball coaching – it was founded by college coaches as a way to help the college basketball community stay informed of what is going on in the coaching profession. HoopDirt.com currently has a Twitter following of over 41,000, and receives nearly three-million page views per month.  

About Just Play Solutions

Just Play Solutions has become the market leader in coaches’ workflow. A platform to help coaches prepare playbooks, automate scouting reports, research analytics, integrate and distribute video, manage recruiting workflow, and organize recruiting schedules. The end-to-end platform is used by over 700 customers across the country and internationally in football, basketball, and lacrosse.

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