Kent State men’s basketball head coach Rob Senderoff has announced the hiring of Brock Erickson as the program’s assistant coach and former Golden Flash Julian Sullinger as the team’s director of basketball operations.
Erickson comes to Kent State after four years with MAAC powerhouse Iona. There, Erickson helped develop the Gael program into a postseason staple, having won 20 games in all four seasons and earning back-to-back conference championships. In all four of his seasons at Iona, the Gaels have reached the MAAC Championship game and have earned bids to either the NCAA Tournament or the NIT.
“I’ve known Brock for a long time, going back to his time as an assistant junior college coach at Monroe in New York,” said Senderoff. “He went on to become a successful junior college head coach and most recently a Division I assistant. We wanted to bring in someone with a track record of success, and Brock has been a winning coach at Iona for the last four years. He has had tremendous success recruiting there and can help us bring in the student-athletes we’ll need to continue to be successful.”
This past season, Erickson helped guide Iona to a 22 win season and a 14th seed in the NCAA Tournament. Iona had exceptional wins throughout the year, including victories over Mountain West Conference champions Nevada, Saint Peter’s and Ohio. The Gaels were one of the best perimeter shooting teams in the nation, finishing the year at 39.7 percent shooting from 3-point range.
“Brock will be able to help our perimeter players develop in particular,” noted Senderoff. “Iona has been a great offensive team and he will be able to help us incorporate that here.”
Prior to his time at Iona, Erickson served as the head coach at State College of Florida in Bradenton, Florida. In 2012-13, he guided the Manatees to a No. 8 ranking by the FCSAA. His team led the nation in scoring that season at 95.1 points per game. SCF captured the 2013 Suncoast Conference Tournament title and qualified for the state tournament for the third time in 15 years.
Erickson’s coaching resume also includes stints as an assistant coach at Monroe College, College of Eastern Utah and City College of New York. All three programs set new benchmarks for wins during his time with them.
Erickson played college basketball at both Rhode Island and Assumption.
Julian Sullinger will return to Kent after four seasons at Tiffin, where he aided in recruiting, scouting and developing post players. Most notably, Sullinger was a Golden Flash from 2006-09.
“It’s always great to have former players be able to join your staff,” Senderoff said. “Julian has paid his dues, having worked for four years at Tiffin. He played here for four years and was a part of some tremendous teams that won a lot of games. Julian has experience at the highest level at Kent.”
Sullinger was a winner at Kent State, helping the Flashes take two conference championships during his time here. As a sophomore, he shot 59.9 percent (106-for-177) from the floor, the sixth best mark in program history. He was a captain over his last two seasons as a student-athlete, winning 47 games over that span.
“He also comes from a basketball family,” said Senderoff. “Both of his brothers played at Ohio State, and his youngest brother (Jared Sullinger) was drafted. His father, Satch Sullinger, is a legendary high school coach in the Columbus area. But most of all, it’s great to have another former player back here working with our program. He will be a tremendous asset to Kent State and our local community.”
Prior to working at Tiffin, Sullinger coached alongside his father at Northland High School in Columbus. With Sullinger on the bench, the Vikings compiled a 50-2 record and won a regional championship. Notable athletes that played for Northland during his time there include his brother Jared Sullinger and Trey Burke of the Washington Wizards.
The new additions to the Kent State staff will help the Flashes defend their MAC Championship during the 2017-18 season. Check back with KentStateSports.com for updates throughout the offseason.