OFFICIAL: Central Arkansas names Shulman as new Head Basketball Coach

Following up on today’s earlier report (ASUN DIRT), John Shulman has officially been named as the new Head Basketball Coach at Central Arkansas. Here is the statement the UCA released announcing the move:

The University of Central Arkansas men’s basketball program has found its new head coach in John Shulman, UCA’s director of athletics Dr. Brad Teague announced Monday.

Shulman brings to UCA an extensive career as a collegiate head coach, most recently at the University of Alabama-Huntsville. He was previously the head coach at Chattanooga and served as an assistant at Wofford, Tennessee Tech and East Tennessee State.

“We were very fortunate to have a strong interest in our men’s basketball position,” said Teague. “We interviewed and vetted many candidates. John Shulman rose to the top due to his many years of head coaching experience at the Division I and Division II levels, coupled with his infectious energy and enthusiasm. I have no doubt that Bear Nation will love and embrace Coach Shulman and his family. 

“We are excited to welcome John and his wife Amy to Conway and campus. Their three sons will be a big part of their program as well. I am very happy they are coming to Central Arkansas to lead our men’s basketball program.”

Shulman’s UAH Chargers played this past weekend in the NCAA Division II South Regional, the fifth consecutive season they made the NCAA Tournament under Shulman, who had a 112-39 record in five seasons at UAH.

“I couldn’t be more excited and honored to become the men’s basketball coach at UCA,” said Shulman. “From the first interaction that I had with Dr. Teague and (associate AD) Matt Whiting, it just felt right. We were so impressed with the facilities, the campus, the city, but it was the people that sold the Shulman family on UCA.  

“Everything is about the right fit and it fits us perfectly. We are so excited to hit the ground running and bring a fun and winning style to Conway. I promise that we will work tirelessly to bring a winning tradition to UCA on the basketball court. I am so proud to be part of the university and will lean on the other coaches to learn the UCA way as their success on and off the court and field are very impressive.  

“We look forward to not only being your basketball coach but also a great neighbor and an active participant in the Conway community. I am honored that Dr. Teague, Matt Whiting and (president) Dr. Houston Davis thought we were the right fit and we will work extremely hard to make sure that great things happen in the Farris Center.”

Shulman, a two-time graduate of East Tennessee State University, coached at Chattanooga from 2004-13 and took the Mocs to two NCAA Tournaments in 2004-05 and 2008-09.Shulman had 18 players who would eventually play professionally, and his squads also featured 11 All-Southern Conference performers and 10 Southern Conference All-Tournament selections. He brought to campus four of the top 10 all-time scorers, three of the top 10 shot blockers, four of the top 10 rebounders, five of the top 15 in field goals, and each of the top five best 3-point shooters in program history.

At UAH, Shulman had two Gulf South Conference Players of the Year, three All-South District selections and five All-GSC players. Sam Orf became the school’s ninth All-American and first-ever CoSIDA Academic All-America selection after being named the GSC West Division Player of the Year. In 2022-23, Shulman led the Chargers to the GSC regular season championship and the No. 1 seed in the GSC Tournament behind Player of the Year Chaney Johnson.

Shulman and his wife Amy have three sons, Max, Tanner and J.C.

   “There is no person in the game I respect more than John Shulman. I have worked closely with John for over a decade teaching young players and mentoring young coaches, and I have never been around a more passionate person dedicated to serving others.  
   John is an outstanding coach and teacher of the game, and he is a relentless competitor. He is also a person of high character, integrity and empathy for those in his charge.  John is not only a winner, he has the heart of a champion.  His players will not just have him as a basketball coach for four years, they will have him as their coach, advocate and friend for life. 
   Central Arkansas made an inspired choice to have John Shulman as its basketball coach.”  
– Jay Bilas, ESPN 

   “John Shulman is one of the best basketball coaches in America and he is a better person than he is a coach. His enthusiasm is contagious and will treat everyday like it’s his first day on the job. A great teacher and role model he has the ability to hold his team to a standard, demand effort and excellence both on and off the court. 
   “He builds lifetime relationships with his players because his goals for his players are much higher than 10 feet. Simply a home run hire for the program, university and community.”
– Seth Greenberg.  ESPN

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