Phil Martelli Jr. officially named Head Basketball Coach at Bryant

Bryant University President Ross Gittell, Ph.D. and Vice President of Athletics & Recreation Bill Smith have named Phil Martelli Jr. head coach of Bryant men’s basketball.

Martelli becomes the ninth men’s basketball coach in Bryant’s history and marks the first head coaching role for Martelli. He spent the past five seasons, including the last three as the Associate Head Coach, on the Bulldog bench.

“We are excited to name Phil Martelli Jr. the head coach of Bryant men’s basketball,” Smith said. “As Associate Head Coach, he was instrumental in building Bryant Basketball into one of the top mid-major programs in the country. With Phil’s skills, values and commitment, the future of Bryant basketball is in good hands.”

“Bryant prides itself on teaching the importance of character, integrity, and leadership in all we do,” said Bryant Board of Trustees Chair David Beirne. “I can’t think of anyone better suited than Phil, a proven values-based leader, to write the next chapter in our journey toward the national stage.” 

In his five years at Bryant, Martelli helped the team win 79 games, Northeast Conference regular season and tournament championships, and a trip to the 2022 NCAA Tournament. Bryant won 15+ games in each of the last four seasons, the first in DI program history, ranking in the top three of the conference in field goal percentage defense and three-point percentage defense in three of his five seasons.

During his tenure, Martelli helped guide several Bulldogs to earning All-Conference honors, including America East Preseason All-Conference selections Sherif Gross-Bullock and Earl Timberlake. Also, during his five seasons on the sidelines, Bryant produced several pro players, including Hall Elisias, Adham Eleeda, Peter Kiss, and Adam Grant.

“Phil’s contributions at Bryant, working with student-athletes, and supporting our University’s mission is outstanding,” said President Gittell. “He’s shown an unwavering dedication to our players both on the court and in the classroom. Knowing Phil’s commitment to excellence, this promises to be a successful season for our student-athletes and the team.”

Prior to his time in Smithfield, Martelli spent 13 seasons as an assistant coach, making stops at Delaware, Niagara, Manhattan, and Central Connecticut. He helped both Delaware (2014) and Niagara (2007) reach the NCAA Tournament, winning a combined 150 games during those two stops.

Martelli Jr. follows in the footsteps of his father, the well-respected coach Phil Martelli, who served as the head coach at Saint Joseph’s from 1995 to 2019 and is currently the interim head coach at the University of Michigan.

Martelli’s first game as head coach is on Thursday when the Black and Gold play at Boston University.

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