Lorenzo Romar Named Assistant for U.S. Pan Am Games Team
May 8, 2003
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - 2000 NCAA champion coach Tom Izzo (Michigan State University) has been tagged by the USA Basketball to serve as head coach of the 2003 USA Basketball Men's Pan American Games Team, while college head coaches Lorenzo Romar (University of Washington) and Quin Snyder (University of Missouri) were named assistant coaches. The coaching selections were made by the USA Basketball Men's Collegiate Committee, approved by USA Basketball's Executive Committee and are subject to approval by the U.S. Olympic Committee. The Men's Collegiate Committee, chaired by Terry Holland, former University of Virginia Athletics Director, is charged with the player selections for the 2003 U.S. squad as well.
The Pan American Games, held every four years in the year prior to the Olympics, will be held Aug. 1-17, in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The men's basketball competition is slated for Aug. 2-6. The field of teams in men's basketball, which will include teams from eight nations, is not yet known.
The 2003 USA Basketball Men's National Team Trials, which will be used to select finalists for the 12-member USA Men's Pan American Games Team, will be held May 30-June 1 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. The USA squad is slated to train July 21-28 at the RDV Sportsplex in Orlando, Florida.
'Tom Izzo is recognized as one of the very best coaches in the college game today. His team's are always well coached and superbly prepared for the opposing team. Tom served as an assistant coach with USA Basketball's Senior Team that represented the United States by winning a gold medal in the 2001 Goodwill Games in Brisbane, Australia,' stated Holland. 'Lorenzo Romar has established winning programs at Pepperdine and St. Louis before moving to his alma mater, Washington, in 2002. His previous USA Basketball experience has been in the 22 And Under World Championship in Australia and as a player in the U.S. Olympic Festival. Quin Snyder moved from perennial power, Duke, to Missouri where he has quickly established his program as one of the challengers in one of the country's strongest basketball conferences. Quin was an outstanding point guard and is highly regarded as a 'players' coach.'
'After a great experience with USA Basketball as an assistant at the Goodwill Games, I'm excited to have the opportunity to be the head coach at the Pan American Games,' said Izzo. 'I look forward to working with the best college basketball players in the nation. USA Basketball is a class organization that represents excellence. This is a great opportunity to represent the United States as we work towards winning the gold medal against what is sure to be a challenging field of competition.
'USA Basketball has selected two excellent assistants for the team in Lorenzo Romar and Quin Snyder. Both men have established themselves as two of the best coaches in the nation. Before becoming head coaches, they each developed their skills as assistant coaches at championship programs, and I hope to take advantage of their expertise as we represent the United States.'
Izzo is making his second appearance on a USA Basketball coaching staff, having served as an assistant under Minnesota Timberwolves mentor Flip Saunders at the 2001 Goodwill Games. The USA Goodwill Games Team, utilizing young NBA standouts, finished 5-0 in Australia to claim the gold medal.
In eight seasons (1995-96 to 2002-03) as head coach of the Michigan State basketball program, Izzo has established MSU as one of the premier programs in the nation. Owning an eight-year career head coaching record of 189-78 for a sterling 70.8 winning percentage, Izzo has led the Spartans to one NCAA national championship, four regular season Big Ten championships, two Big Ten Tournament titles, three NCAA Final Four appearances and he has earned five National Coach of the Year awards. Izzo's 189 wins through his first eight seasons rank fourth best in NCAA history and Michigan State is the only college basketball team to appear in four of the last five NCAA Tournament Elite Eights.
Finishing 16-16 and 17-12 while making NIT appearances in his first two seasons, Izzo's Spartans over the last six seasons have gone a combined 156-50 for an spectacular 75.7 winning percentage. Posting records of 22-8 (1997-98), 33-5 (1998-99), 32-7 (1999-2000), 28-5 (2000-01), 19-12 (2001-02) and most recently 22-13 (2002-03), the Spartans have made six consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, advancing to the Sweet 16 in 1998, the Elite Eight in 2003 and the Final Four in 1999, 2000 and 2001. Having compiled a 25-8 (.758) record in postseason play, in NCAA Tournament play his squads have rolled to a 19-5 record for a 79.2 winning percentage, making Izzo the winningest active coach in NCAA Tournament action.
In Big Ten Conference play, MSU over the past six seasons has also been impressive logging a shining 74-22 (.770 winning percentage) mark while winning outright or sharing in four consecutive Big Ten championships between 1997-98 and 2000-01.
With the program's success over the past six seasons, Izzo has earned his share of coaching honors. Named the 2001 Division I National Coach of the Year by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC), as well as NABC District 11 Coach of the Year, in 2000 he was honored as the United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) District V Coach of the Year and NABC District 11 Coach of the Year. Izzo was selected in 1999 the Basketball Times National Coach of the Year and the NABC District 11 Coach of the Year, and in 1998 was tagged by the Associated Press, Basketball News and the USBWA as their National Coach of the Year and also the Big Ten Coach of the Year.
Having completed his 20th season as a member of the Michigan State coaching staff, Izzo has been with the Spartan program since taking a part-time assistant coaching position in 1983. An assistant coach with the Spartans for three seasons (1983-84 through 1985-86), Izzo left MSU in May of 1986 to become the top assistant and recruiting coordinator at the University of Tulsa (Okla.). But, on June 10 of the same year, Izzo returned to East Lansing when Spartan assistant Mike Deane left to become head coach at Siena College (N.Y.). In July 1990, MSU legendary head mentor Jud Heathcote appointed him associate head coach. On March 30, 1993, then MSU Athletics Director Merrily Dean Baker recommended both a one-year contract extension for Heathcote through the 1994-95 season and that Izzo be appointed head coach upon Jud's retirement. The MSU Board of Trustees accepted both recommendations on April 9, 1994.
Izzo played guard for the Northern Michigan University's basketball team for four seasons (197374 through 1976-77), and was voted the team's MVP as a senior. Also named Division II AllAmerican Third Team that year, he established the Wildcat record for most minutes played in a season. In October 1990, Izzo was inducted into the Northern Michigan University Hall of Fame and was selected as an inductee into the Upper Peninsula Hall of Fame during the summer of 1998.
'Obviously, it is a great honor whenever you can represent your country in any capacity. This should be a great experience. I'm really excited about the people that I will be working with in Tom Izzo and Quin Snyder. I have had many experiences with USA Basketball. It's an organization that I have a lot of respect for. I'm really appreciative about the work that they do and the way that they go about doing it,' said Romar.
Romar also boasts of previous USA Basketball experience. He participated in his first USA Basketball coaching assignment during the summer of 1997, serving as an assistant coach under University of Utah's Rick Majerus for the United States' 22 And Under World Championship Team that finished 6-2 and in fifth place in Melbourne, Australia. As a player, Romar was a member of the 1978 U.S. Olympic Festival West Team that earned a bronze medal.
Head coach at three different Division I programs, Romar has compiled a 103-105 record in seven seasons (1996-97 through 2002-03) as a head coach. Named on April 3, 2002, head coach at his alma mater, Washington, in his first year of rebuilding the Huskies finished 10-17 overall.
Romar has also served head coaching tenures at Pepperdine University (Calif.) (1996-97 through 1998-99) and Saint Louis University (Mo.) (1999-2000 through 2001-02). At both Pepperdine and Saint Louis, he helped to revive programs.
In three years at Saint Louis, Romar compiled a 51-44 record (.537 winning percentage), including victories over nine different conference champions. His 51 wins rank seventh among all-time SLU coaches and is the fourth-best three-year total in the school's history.
Named head men's basketball coach at Saint Louis on March 26, 1999, Romar in his inaugural season at the school guided the Billikens to a 19-14 record, an upset of top-ranked University of Cincinnati (Ohio) in the second round of the Conference USA Tournament and SLU went on to win the championship and claim the league's automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament. It was the third best debut season record in Saint Louis annals. In directing the Billikens to the Conference USA Tournament title and an automatic invitation to the NCAA Tournament, Romar became the first Saint Louis coach to accomplish either feat in his first season.
After reaching the NCAA Tournament his first season, Romar's 2000-01 squad finished 17-14 and became the first team in Conference USA history to defeat perennial power Cincinnati in back-to-back games. Romar also directed the Billikens to season sweeps of eventual conference champion UNC-Charlotte (N.C.) and rival University of Louisville (Ky.), marking the first time Saint Louis had swept the Cardinals in 35 years.
Prior to coaching at Saint Louis, Romar amassed a three-year record of 42-44 at Pepperdine, including 36 wins in his final two seasons with the Waves. In his second year at Pepperdine, Romar staged a significant 11-game improvement over the previous season to finish with a 17-10 record and earn a second-place finish in the West Coast Conference, just one game behind champion Gonzaga University (Wash.). Pepperdine was the second-most improved NCAA Division I team in 1997-98, trailing only Connecticut. In his final season at the school, Romar guided Pepperdine to a 19-13 record and a bid to the NIT, the Waves' first postseason appearance in five years. The season after his departure, Pepperdine earned an NCAA Tournament berth with the majority of players Romar recruited.
Prior to his stint at Pepperdine, Romar was the top assistant at UCLA from 1992-93 through 1995-96. Recruiting future standout Bruins like Toby Bailey, Cameron Dollar, J.R. Henderson, Kris Johnson, Jelani McCoy and Charles O'Bannon, UCLA's record during Romar's four-year assistant coaching tenure was a stunning 97-28 (.776 winning percentage). The Bruins won back-to-back Pacific-10 Conference championships in 1995 and 1996, and UCLA registered a 31-2 record in 1995 and won the NCAA national championship.
A native of Compton, Calif., Romar earned his associate degree from Cerritos Community College (Calif.) in 1978. During his sophomore year at Cerritos, Romar led the Falcons to a 23-8 record, averaged 14.1 ppg., set the school record for single-season assists and earned first-team all-league honors. Romar was inducted into the California Community College Hall of Fame in 1992.
He transferred to Washington in 1978 and played his final two seasons for legendary Husky head coach Marv Harshman. A two-year starter for the Huskies on the 1978-79 and 1979-80 teams, Romar averaged 6.0 ppg., 1.4 rpg. during his junior season, posted team-leading totals of 80 assists and 35 steals, and shot 51 percent from the field and 72 percent from the free throw line. Serving as team captain his senior year, Romar played all 28 games for the Huskies who finished 18-10, including a 9-9 conference mark, and participated postseason in the NIT. He led all UW playmakers with 99 assists while averaging 9.3 ppg. and 1.9 rpg., and was the recipient of Washington's Most Inspirational Award both years, an honor voted on by his teammates.
The seventh round pick of the 1980 NBA Draft by the Golden State Warriors, Romar totaled 1,731 points (5.9 ppg.) and distributed 1,022 assists (3.5 apg.) during 291 career regular-season NBA games. His five-year NBA career included stints with Golden State (1981-84), Milwaukee (1984) and Detroit (1984-85).
Following the 1984-85 season, Romar joined Athletes in Action (AIA) and he started 224 of 233 games during his seven years as a player for AIA. Romar set single-game records while an AIA player for most points (54) and assists (21). He remains the team's all-time assists leader (1,689) and ranks No. 2 in all-time scoring (4,244). In 1992, the then 34-year-old Romar scored 45 points against Michigan's 'Fab Five' freshmen, who went on to reach the NCAA championship game.
In 1989, Romar took on co-head coaching duties for AIA, in addition to his continued responsibilities as a player. The year prior to Romar's assuming the coaching position, AIA went 12-25, the worst record in the program's history. Just three years later, Romar directed the 1991-92 AIA team to 21 wins, including a victory over NCAA Final Four participant Florida.
'I am thrilled to have been selected by USA Basketball to be an assistant on this team and I look forward to the opportunity to represent our country,' Snyder said. 'I am excited to work with coach Izzo as he has long been one of the people I have respected the most in our profession.'
Snyder in four seasons as head mentor at Missouri has led the Tigers to an 84-49 mark (.632 winning percentage) and has averaged 21 wins per season during that time. During that four year span, Snyder has also led Missouri to the NCAA Tournament each season, including an Elite Eight appearance in 2002.
Under his tutelage, the Tigers have won three straight first round games in the NCAA Tournament, marking the first time in school history that has occurred. The Tigers, who finished the 2002-03 season 22-11, also made a valiant run at history this season in the 2003 Big 12 Tournament, winning each of their first three contests of the tourney. Mizzou had a chance to become the first squad to win the Big 12 Tourney playing in every round (four straight days), but came up just short against Oklahoma, 49-47.
Snyder's Tigers made history during the 2001-02 season when they finished 24-8 and surged into the Elite Eight in the 2002 NCAA Tournament, ending just six points short of reaching Mizzou's first-ever Final Four.
The 2000-01 season saw Snyder's Tigers finish 20-13 and earn an NCAA Tournament invite for the second straight year. Mizzou provided a couple of thrills in its two-game stint in the 2001 NCAA tourney. Clarence Gilbert nailed a baseline 18-footer with less than one second left to give the Tigers a 70-68 win over the University of Georgia in the opening round of the tournament, marking MU's first NCAA win since 1995. MU's second round contest came against Duke University (N.C.), setting up a contest against Snyder's coaching mentor, Blue Devil head coach Mike Krzyzewski. The Tigers kept things tight, but the eventual national champion Blue Devils held on to post a 94-81 win.
In his first year as a head coach, Snyder took a young, outsized Tiger squad and led them to an 18-13 record and an NCAA Tournament appearance. Missouri's 18 victories made Snyder the winningest first-year coach in school history, breaking the old mark of 17 for coaches in their first year at MU, a feat which had been accomplished twice but not since the 1920-21 season. For his efforts, Snyder was named National Rookie Coach-of-the-Year by Basketball Times.
Snyder became the 15th head basketball coach in Mizzou history, and just the fifth since 1926, when he was named head coach on April 7, 1999. In 10 years at Duke as a player and a member of the Blue Devils' coaching staff, he took part in five Final Fours, three as a player (1986, 1988, 1989) and two more as a coach (1994, 1999).
During his playing days (1985-86 through 1988-89), the Blue Devils reached three Final Fours and won two Atlantic Coast Conference championships (1986, 1988). He was named to the All-ACC Tournament team in 1988 and served as a team co-captain his senior year. He still ranks third on Duke's all-time career assists chart with 575. During his college playing career, Snyder was named to the ACC Honor Roll three times and twice won the team's coveted Deryl Hart Academic Award. He was also named GTE/CoSIDA (College Sports Information Directors Association of America) Academic All-America in 1989.
After completing a year of both business and law school, Snyder took a year off from school in order to serve as the assistant coach for the NBA's Los Angeles Clippers. With the Clippers, Snyder served as a bench coach and was responsible for Western Conference advance scouting.
Snyder then returned to his alma mater, where he served as an administrative assistant coach for the Blue Devils' team for two seasons (1993-94 through 1994-95), while doubling as a graduate student. He received his J.D./M.B.A. in 1995. Moving up to an assistant coach at Duke for the 1995-96 and 1996-97 seasons, Snyder was promoted to associate head coach and served in that position for two seasons, 1997-98 and 1998-99. While Duke's associate head coach, the Blue Devils compiled a 69-6 record (.920 winning percentage), including a 31-1 mark in ACC play, won two ACC regular season championships, one ACC Tournament, and made one Elite Eight and one Final Four showing in the NCAA Tournament.
A native of the Pacific Northwest, Snyder attended Mercer Island High School in the state of Washington. A two-time state player of the year, Snyder led the team to the 1985 state championship. During this time Mercer Island achieved a No. 1 ranking in USA Today's high school polls. Snyder was named a McDonald's All-America player, becoming the first-ever chosen from the state of Washington.
USA Men In The Pan American Games
The Pan American Games, held every four years in the year prior to the Olympics and organized by the Pan American Sports Organization (PASO), is a multi-sport competition open to men and women representing countries from North, South and Central America and the Caribbean.
This summer the Pan American Games will be held August 1-17, with the men's basketball competition slated for August 2-6, in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The field of participants for the basketball competition, which is expected to consist of eight teams, is not yet known.
The USA men, who fell 95-78 to Brazil in the 1999 gold medal game, have earned a medal in 12 of their 13 Pan Am Games appearances, including a record eight golds, as well as three silvers and one bronze; and currently own a 79-8 (.908) all-time mark at the Pan Am Games.
Held since 1951, the USA dominated the first five Pan Am Games, earning five consecutive golds. At the 1971 Pan Ams, despite a record of 2-1 in the preliminary round, the USA did not advance to the medal round and for the first time in Pan American history did not win the gold medal. However, the United States rebounded for a 26-0 record over the next three Pan Am Games and captured its last Pan Am gold in 1983. While the gold has eluded the U.S. in the past four Games, with the Americans earning three silvers and a bronze medal, the United States is aiming high for 2003.
Many USA Basketball athletes who have been selected to a Pan American Games team have gone on to compete in the Olympic Games, while many others enjoyed stellar professional careers. In all, 34 Pan Am athletes have been a member of a U.S. Olympic squad, including Ernie Grunfeld, Grant Hill, Luscious Jackson, Michael Jordan, Christian Laettner, Danny Manning, Chris Mullin, Sam Perkins, Oscar Robertson, David Robinson, Isiah Thomas, Jerry West and Jo Jo White.
USA Basketball Men's Collegiate Committee
The USA Basketball Men's Collegiate Committee, in addition to chair Holland, consists of: NCAA appointees Jim Boeheim (head coach, Syracuse University, N.Y.); Rob Evans (head coach, Arizona State University); Jim O'Brien (head coach, Ohio State University) and Tubby Smith (head coach, University of Kentucky); NABC appointee Oliver Purnell (head coach, Clemson University, S.C.); NAIA appointee Ralph Turner (head coach, Union University, Tenn.); NJCAA appointee Dan Sparks (head coach, Vincennes University, Ind.), and athlete representatives Steve Wojciechowski (1995 Junior World Championship team / assistant coach, Duke University, N.C.) and A.J. Wynder (1995 Pan American Games team / head coach, Nassau Community College, N.Y.).
2003 USA Men's Pan American Games Team Coaching Staff
Head Coach: Tom Izzo, Michigan State University
Assistant Coach: Lorenzo Romar, University of Washington
Assistant Coach: Quin Snyder, University of Missouri
2003 USA Basketball Men's Pan American Games Team Facts
Event: 2003 Pan American Games
Dates: Aug. 2-6, 2003
Site: Santa Domingo, Dominican Republic
USA Basketball National Team Trials: May 30-June 1 in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
USA Team Training: The USA squad is slated to train July 21-28 at the RDV Sportsplex in Orlando, Florida.
USA Head Coach: Tom Izzo (Michigan State University)
USA Assistant Coaches: Lorenzo Romar (University of Washington), Quin Snyder (University of Missouri).
USA Team Members: Finalists for the USA Men's Pan American Games Team will be selected following the May 30-June 1 USA Basketball National Team Trials.
Competition Format: The field of participants for the basketball competition, which is expected to consist of eight teams, is not yet known. The eight teams will be divided into two preliminary round pools of four teams each.
2003 Men's Pan American Games Schedule
GROUP A GROUP B
Saturday, August 2
3:00 p.m. Teams TBD
5:00 p.m. Teams TBD
7:00 p.m. Teams TBD
9:00 p.m. Teams TBD
Sunday, August 3
1:00 p.m. Teams TBD
3:00 p.m. Teams TBD
5:00 p.m. Teams TBD
9:00 p.m. Teams TBD
Monday, August 4
1:00 p.m. Teams TBD
3:00 p.m. Teams TBD
5:00 p.m. Teams TBD
9:00 p.m. Teams TBD
(Following preliminary round play, the top two teams from each preliminary round group will advance to the medal round to determine first through fourth places. Teams ranked third and fourth in each preliminary round group will compete in the classification round to determine fifth through eighth places)
Tuesday, August 5
1:00 p.m. Classification Semifinals: A3 vs. B4
3:00 p.m. Classification Semifinals: B3 vs. A4
7:00 p.m. Medal Semifinals: A1 vs. B2
9:00 p.m. Medal Semifinals: B1 vs. A2
Wednesday, August 6
1:00 p.m. 7th/8th Place: Loser of A3B4 and Loser of B3A4
3:00 p.m. 5th/6th Place: Winner of A3B4 and Winner of B3A4
3:00 p.m. Bronze Medal Game: Loser of A1B2 and Loser of B1A2
5:00 p.m. Gold Medal Game: Winner of A1B2 and Winner of B1A2
NOTE: All times local. The Dominican Republic is the same time as EDT.
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