Brett MacConnell, a New Jersey native set to begin his seventh year on the Princeton men’s basketball staff, has been elevated to the role of Associate Head Coach.
MacConnell has served as the program’s recruiting coordinator for the past three seasons, helping to bring to campus with each class one or more freshmen rated at least three stars.
“Brett’s fingerprints are all over our program,” Mitch Henderson ’98, the Franklin C. Cappon-Edward G. Green ’40 head coach of Princeton men’s basketball said. “He is a tireless worker and his unwavering dedication to Princeton basketball makes all of us better. He’s been hugely instrumental in our success in his six years here through recruiting the top student-athletes in the country and then, importantly, developing them while they are here. He understands what it takes to win and he is very deserving of this recognition.”
With MacConnell on staff, Princeton has made a return to the NCAA Tournament, coming within two points of Notre Dame in 2017, and to the NIT for the first time since 2002, taking Virginia Tech to overtime in Blacksburg. The 2017 season saw Princeton go 14-0 in the Ivy League for the first time since 1998 and for the first time for any Ivy team since 2008, as well as win the inaugural Ivy League Tournament.
Princeton has posted a 112-64 record during MacConnell’s time on the staff, including highlight wins over Penn State, USC and Rutgers, along with a 58-26 Ivy record and a 28-2 record against Ivy opponents in 2016 and 2017.
“I can’t thank Coach Henderson enough for giving me the opportunity more than six years ago to join a program with such a rich tradition,” MacConnell said. “I am especially appreciative of his mentorship and now allowing me to take on this expanded role. I’m proud to have been able to play a part in helping to build on Princeton basketball’s well established success, including the first-ever Ivy League Tournament Championship, an undefeated conference record, and Princeton’s basketball’s 25th NCAA Tournament appearance in 2017.”
During MacConnell’s time with the program, eight Princeton alumni have gone on to play professionally, and Princeton players have earned two Ivy League Player of the Year awards, one Ivy League Rookie of the Year honor, two Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year awards, and 15 All-Ivy League honors.
In 2016, following MacConnell’s third season as an assistant coach with Princeton, MacConnell was one of 30 assistant coaches nationally named to the NABC’s 2016 Under Armour 30-under-30 Team.
“This promotion is a reflection of the success of the program, the players I’ve been fortunate enough to coach, the coaches on our staff that I’ve had the privilege to work with, Coach Henderson and the entire Princeton athletic department,” MacConnell said. “I’m honored that Coach Henderson, Mollie Marcoux Samaan, and our administration have this confidence in me.”