Loyola Maryland Basketball Staff Update

Loyola University Maryland Head Men’s Basketball Coach Josh Loeffler has announced three members of his staff who will serve as assistant coaching for the 2024-2025 season, his first at the head of the bench with the Greyhounds.

The trio – Matt Blue, Kevin Farrell and Ricky Hernandez – combines significant regional, international and professional backgrounds along with ties to Loyola and the Patriot League from the past.

“I could not be happier about the group of assistant coaches we have joining our staff,” Loeffler said. “Not only are they talented and hard-working, but they complement each other very well. I have been fortunate to work with each of them before so I can speak directly to the fact that they will give all they have to this program. We are very fortunate to have this group of coaches.”

Matt Blue joins the Greyhounds after spending the last eight years working the National Basketball Association (NBA) with its development programs in Asia and Australia. Since 2020, Blue has honed his coaching and connections while serving as a player development coach for the NBA Global Academy located Basketball Australia’s Centre of Excellence at the Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra.

“I have known Matt as a student-athlete, college assistant and coach in the international game,” said Loeffler. “I am so happy to have him with us at Loyola. Very few coaches can instill confidence and develop players like Matt and he has gained invaluable experience coaching at very high levels. He will bring knowledge and expertise from working with some of the very best.”

In Canberra, Blue has led the day-to-day development of top players from around the globe while also coaching teams at NBA Academy events throughout the world.

Prior to his work in Australia, Blue spent three years working at NBA Academy China in Shanghai where he started in 2017 and mentored, among others, the No. 14 selection in the 2019 WNBA Draft, Han Xu.

Blue took eight years of collegiate coaching experience with him to Asia and Australia when he began working for the NBA after spending time at Lafyette College, the University of Hartford and Susquehanna University.

He spent time in Easton, Pennsylvania, working for the Patriot League’s all-time wins leader, Fran O’Hanlon, at Lafayette in 2015-17; with the Leopards, Blue coached two multi-time All-Patriot League honorees, Nick Lindner and Matt Klinewski.

He spent his first stint with O’Hanlon during the 2009-10 season as an assistant coach on the same staff as Loeffler. The Leopards went 19-13 during the season and reached the Patriot League Championship Game.

Blue joined John Gallagher’s staff at Hartford in 2010 and helped the Hawks go from a team that went 8-22 the year prior to his arrival to one that won 17 games in 2012-13 and 2013-14, was a perennial contender in the Northeast Conference (NEC) and advanced to the College Insiders Tournament (CIT) in 2012-2013.

With the Hawks, he coached five players who scored more than 1,300 career points and seven All-NEC players. He got his first collegiate coaching experience in 2008-09 as a member of the staff at NCAA Divisoin III school Susquehanna University, helping the River Hawks to an 18-8 record.

Blue was a team captain as a student-athlete at St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York, where he led the Saints to the 2007 NCAA Division III Second Round, finishing with a 23-6 record. He was a 43-percent 3-point and 82-percent free-throw shooter during his four years at the school. Blue and Loeffler first crossed paths at St. Lawrence in 2004-05, Blue’s sophomore year, when Loeffler was a graduate assistant coach.

Blue graduated from the Canton, New York, school with a Bachelor of Arts in English in 2007.

Kevin Farrell will be a familiar face to many Greyhounds fans and alumni in his return to the Loyola sidelines as an assistant coach. Farrell was a 2012 graduate of Loyola and served as a team manager from 2008-12 before spending nine seasons as the program’s director of operations from 2012-21.

“I am thrilled to welcome Kevin back to Loyola,” said Loeffler. “He worked tirelessly here in his first stint and has grown as a coach and recruiter during his time away. He has a great work ethic and cares deeply about the Greyhounds. I know that Kevin will pour everything he has into building the best program for his alma mater.”

Farrell has been an assistant coach at a pair of NCAA Division II schools since leaving Loyola, working at Belmont-Abbey College outside Charlotte in 2021-22 before moving to Metropolitan State University of Denver for the last two years.

In his first year as an assistant coach, Farrell helped the Crusaders finish with a 22-10 overall record, a Conference Carolinas title and trip to the NCAA Division II National Championships.

He mentored 2020-21 Conference Carolinas Freshman of the Year Chandler Baker who has since moved on to the Patriot League and will be a fourth-year player at Colgate University in 2024-25.

After that season, Farrell moved to the Mountain Time Zone where he was an assistant coach at MSU-Denver. He was part of a quick rebuild in the Mile High City that saw the Roadrunners go 12-17 in 2022-23 and finish seventh in the nationally renowned Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference to posting a 19-10 overall mark and 13-9 league record in 2023-24.

A pair of Roadrunners – Brayden Maldonado and Caleb McGill were named to the All-RMAC First Team after the 2023-24 season, and another pair, Mario Lacy, Jr., and K.J. Garrett earned All-RMAC Honorable Mention. Another four, including Maldonado and McGill, were named to the Academic All-RMAC Team.

During his tenure at Loyola, Farrell was involved in every facet of the Greyhounds program, including game preparation, player development, recruiting, scouting, scheduling, academics and operations. He was a manager on the 2012 NCAA Tournament team, and he was the director of operations for a pair of teams that went ot the College Insider Tournament (CIT) and the College Basketball Invitational (CBI).

Farrell worked with three of the 10 players in Loyola history to score more than 1,500 points – Dylon Cormier, Andre Walker and Andrew Kostecka – two of the four three rebounders – Cam Gregory and Golden Dike – and all but one of the 10 Loyola players to earn All-Patriot League honors since 2013-14 – Dylon Cormier (2014), Andre Walker (2015-17), Jarred Jones (2017), Andrew Kostecka (2019-20), Santi Aldama (2021) and Cam Spencer (2022). He graduated from Loyola with a Bachelor of Business Administration in 2012.

Ricky Hernandez will continue with the Loyola coaching staff as an assistant coach after serving as the program’s director of operations in 2023-24. Hernandez initially came to the Evergreen campus last summer from nearby Johns Hopkins University where he was an assistant coach for Loeffler from 2018-23.

“Ricky has helped three collegiate programs win championships and it is not a coincidence,” said Loeffler. “He is great at building relationships, thorough in all his work, and a talented coach. I am thrilled to be back working with him and know that he will be integral to our success at Loyola.”

In his first season with the Greyhounds, Hernandez led the Greyhounds operational needs of travel, video, academics and game preparation, while also serving on the court with the player development of Loyola players.

The 2008 graduate of West Chester University was the top assistant on the Johns Hopkins group that was name the 2023 Centennial Conference Coaching Staff of the Year as the Blue Jays reached the NCAA Sweet 16 for the first time 2015 and finished the year with a school-record-tying 25 wins.

He helped the Blue Jays to a 90-22 (.803) record, two Centennial Conference Championships and three NCAA bids in his five seasons at Johns Hopkins (including the 2020-2021 season when no official games were played).

Hernandez worked with 10 All-Centennial Conference players, including two-time league player of the year Connor Delaney, a First-Team All-American, and two-time conference Defensive Player of the Year Sidney Thybulle.

In 2020, Hernandez was named one of the top NCAA Division III assistant coaches nationally by the Minority Coaches Association.

Prior to joining the staff at Johns Hopkins, Hernandez was an assistant for two seasons at Moravian College where the Greyhounds won a pair of Landmark Conference regular-season titles, the 2018 league tournament and earned a bid to that season’s NCAA Championships.

In his first year on the staff at the Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, school, Moravian won 19 games, the program’s most since 1987-88, and the following year, the Greyhounds set a school record with 20 wins.

Hernandez gained his first collegiate coaching experience at East Stroudsburg University at the NCAA Division II level where he was a graduate assistant coach from 2014-16. He coached two Honorable Mention All-Americans, three All-Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) players and helped the Warriors win the PSAC East title in 2015.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology at West Chester, and he received his master’s in organizational development and leadership from St. Joseph’s University.


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