The College of Saint Rose announced today that Mike Perno has been named the head men’s basketball coach.
“I am so pleased to name Mike Perno the new head coach of the men’s basketball program at Saint Rose,” said Saint Rose President Carolyn J. Stefanco. “Coach Perno embodies Golden Knights athletics, from his quiet confidence on the bench to his emphasis on academics and service to others off the court. As a former player at Saint Rose, he has great respect for what it means to be a Golden Knight, a bond that extends a lifetime as evidenced by the relationships he’s continued with his former teammates and the players he coached during his 12 years as an assistant. The Northeast-10 Conference is a highly respected, competitive league, and Coach Perno will meet that high standard as our program’s leader.”
A 2000 graduate of Saint Rose where he earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, Perno is now in his 13th season overall after serving as an assistant coach throughout the previous 12 years, although he did handle the program’s day-to-day duties in 2006-07, 2014-15 and 2017-18, which former head coach Brian Beaury missed due to medical reasons. Perno has been serving as interim head coach this season. Beaury retired in October.
“Mike Perno is the right person at the right time to take over the head coaching reigns at Saint Rose. Mike served as an assistant under Brian Beaury’s mentorship and successfully stepped in as interim head coach in Brian’s absence, which included two trips to the NCAA Regionals. Mike is highly respected on campus and in the basketball network both regionally and nationally. He knows what it takes to be successful in the highly competitive NE10 and we are excited to have him lead our program,” said Cathy Haker, Director of Athletics and Recreation.
The Golden Knights have benefitted greatly by Perno’s presence on the bench. Saint Rose has garnered five NCAA Tournament berths, including an East Regional Final (Round of 16) appearance in 2016-17, and has advanced to a pair of NE10 Championship semifinals while making a run to the 2007 league title game during his tenure.
Saint Rose has excelled in the classroom as well. The Golden Knights earned the NE10 Team Academic Award for having the highest overall grade-point-average among the conference’s 15 institutions in three of the past four years. They also garnered Team Academic Awards from the National Association of Basketball Coaches in five of the last seasons. Additionally, Julian Lipinski was named the NE10 Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year last spring. He was the third Saint Rose men’s basketball player in the last 10 years to earn the conference’s most prestigious award. Dominykas Milka and Steve Dagostino were recognized in 2014 and 2008 respectively.
Perno had a direct hand in every facet associated with managing a highly successful NCAA Division II program throughout his time as an assistant coach. His primary focus was on recruiting, scouting, scheduling, academic monitoring, team travel, and tape exchange, in addition to preseason and postseason conditioning.
While a student at Saint Rose, Perno was a two-year starter on the men’s basketball squad after transferring from Monmouth University. Both of those Golden Knights teams reached the NCAA Tournament, including the 1998-99 NCAA Northeast Regional Championship squad that advanced to the “Elite Eight” before losing a heartbreaker to Truman State, 106-101, in triple overtime. Perno started 32 games that season, connected on 91, 3-pointers and averaged 12.7 points and 3.2 assists.
In his two years of action, Perno played for teams that finished with a combined 47-15 record. He started 30 games in his final season, contributing 13.9 points and 2.9 assists while converting 87 3-pointers.
Perno arrived at Saint Rose in a coaching capacity after serving as the varsity boys’ basketball coach at Kellenberg Memorial High School on Long Island for five seasons. During that time, he earned a master’s degree from Molloy College (May 2005) in Secondary English with a concentration in English Language Arts.
Perno and his wife, Crystal, reside in nearby Clifton Park along with their sons, Kevin Patrick and Kellan Michael.