ALBANY, N.Y. – The University at Albany men’s basketball head coach received conference recognition on Monday.
Head coach Will Brown said that every year he looks for new ways to improve the program, challenge himself, his staff, his players and set new goals. In his fourteenth year at UAlbany, he’s finally being recognized.
The America East coaches voted Brown the Coach of the Year on Monday. Through adversity, he led a team – with nine new faces – to start the season to a program best 15-1 conference record. Brown called it a team award.
Brown also had some great players to coach. Senior Sam Rowley and junior Evan Singletary were named to the All-Conference First Team Monday afternoon. Rowley notched eight double-doubles this season while Singletary led the conference in assist-to-turnover ratio.
Peter Hooley was named to the second team despite missing half of the Danes’ conference games this season. Before his eight-game absence, the junior guard was the team’s leading scorer. Since his return, he has recorded double digit scoring in three of his last four games.
It’s not all about scoring, though. Ray Sanders’ lock down defense and 25 steals in league play not only earned him a third team nod, but also an All Defensive team nomination. Sanders and Singletary were both junior college transfers and took home awards in the first year of playing Division I basketball.
To round out the team awards, Rowley, Hooley and Dallas Ennema made the All-Academic Team with GPAs over 3.0.
But as nice as the individuals awards are to receive, the team made one thing clear.
“I think it was well deserved, and I’m happy for those guys individually, but I know they’d all give those awards back if it meant an America East Tournament Championship and an opportunity to play in the NCAA Tournament,” Brown said.
“I think we’ve all made it clear, one through 15, that nobody cares about individual accolades, but it’s nice to be recognized,” Hooley said. “But, then again, we’ve had one goal in mind as a team, so putting all that aside, we need to make sure we finish it out.”
UAlbany opens the conference tournament at home against Maine at 7 p.m. on Wednesday.