Robert Ford Named Salem University Men’s Basketball Head Coach

Salem University Athletic Director Steve Potts has announced Robert Ford as the new head coach of the men’s basketball program, Ford becomes the seventh NCAA head coach at Salem.

Coach Ford stated; “I’m truly honored to lead the men’s basketball program here at Salem University. I want to thank President Finuf, Athletic Director Steve Potts, and Associate Athletic Director Alex Joseph for having the confidence in me to lead the program as the head men’s basketball coach”. “I also want to thank coach Adam Williams for hiring me on his staff and trusting me to help him build this program. I look forward to continuing to move the basketball program forward and build a championship level program both on and off the court. We have a terrific group of young men and I look forward to coaching them as we build towards our 2019-2020 season. This is a very exciting time for me and my family and I am looking forward to this next step in my career.”

Former head coach Adam Williams will become the Assistant Head Coach at Division I Stetson University. Earlier this month, Williams was tabbed as the Division II Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Coach of the Year. Williams guided the Tigers to their best record since 2005-2006 with 17 wins.
Last season, Ford was promoted from Men’s Basketball Assistant Head Coach to Associate Head Coach as the team finished with 17 wins. The 17 wins were more wins than the last four seasons combined and the most wins since the 2005-06 season.

“It was clear to us that the best candidate for this position was right here in Salem,” said Potts.  Coach Ford’s basketball IQ is unmatched and his professionalism and care for our student-athletes is second to none. His leadership, knowledge of the game and successes over an impressive coaching career will help further advance the men’s basketball program at Salem.”

Ford has ten years of collegiate coaching experience which includes eight years of experience before his time in Salem. Previously he was the assistant coach at Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) in San Antonio, Texas. In his two seasons with the Saints, Ford helped OLLU reach several program milestones.

He was instrumental in the development of the program’s only First Team All-American, Joe Jackson.  He also helped the Saints to a 22-9 overall record and the school’s first appearance in the Elite 8 of the NAIA National Tournament.  During his tenure, the team was consistently ranked in the top 25 nationally, reaching as high as No. 7.  

Before his two years in San Antonio, Ford was an assistant coach for one year at Paris Junior College, helping PJC reach the Region 14 tournament for the 16th consecutive season.  Five players signed Division I scholarships from that team and all seven sophomores went on to play at four-year universities.

Former Coach Williams established a strong program that has the potential for success for years. “We will miss Coach Williams and the work he did with our basketball program was outstanding,” said Potts. Earlier this month, Williams was tabbed as the Division II Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Coach of the Year as Williams guided the Tigers to their best record since 2005-2006 with 17 wins.

“Becoming the head coach at Salem was a dream come true for me,” stated Williams. “Salem gave me a chance to be a head coach when no one else would! For that, I will always hold a special place in my heart for the relationships I made during my time there. I was lucky to coach outstanding young men who I will have lifelong relationships with.”

Williams went on to add, “my good friend Robert Ford won’t miss a beat with the progress we have made over the last three years. He is more than ready for this opportunity and without question the right man to move the program forward.”

“We are thankful for everything coach Williams has done to elevate our men’s basketball program,” said Potts.  “We understood when Coach Williams was hired that his goal was to elevate to Division I coaching and we are excited about his future. He is an outstanding coach and the best is yet to come for him. Stetson University is adding a terrific coach to its team. We wish Coach Williams the very best as he’s moving’s moving forward in his coaching career.”