COLUMBUS, Ohio – Dan Evans has been hired as Ohio Dominican University's head men's basketball coach, athletic director Jeff Blair announced Monday.
The 13th head coach in Ohio Dominican history, Evans joins the Panthers after spending the past six seasons as an assistant coach at fellow GLIAC member Hillsdale College.
"We had over 150 applicants for this position and we couldn't be more excited to bring Dan to Ohio Dominican," Blair said. "He has tremendous experience coaching in this conference and brings many intangibles to the position. We are confident that Dan is the right coach to bring the men's basketball program back to the level of success it experienced before."
"I consider myself lucky to have this opportunity at Ohio Dominican," Evans said. "It's an excellent private university, which is where I have my background as a player and a coach. I believe strongly in the educational aspect and developing our student-athletes. The opportunity to become a head coach at Ohio Dominican and be in the city of Columbus is a tremendous one for both me and my family."
Evans was part of a coaching staff that rebuilt the Hillsdale basketball program, taking over a team that had just four returning players in the 2007-08 season and quickly turning it into one of the top teams in the GLIAC.
The Chargers have compiled a 61-22 record over the past three seasons, highlighted by a 24-6 mark and NCAA Tournament appearance in 2011-12. Hillsdale won the GLIAC regular season title that season, which came on the heels of a 20-win campaign in 2010-11.
Most recently, the Chargers completed a 17-10 season and qualified for the GLIAC for a sixth consecutive season.
While at Hillsdale, Evans has helped coach five first team all-conference selections, including Brad Guinane, who earned All-American honors in 2012. Off the court, the Hillsdale men's basketball team has posted a 3.0 cumulative GPA and has been involved in community outreach programs such as providing free basketball clinics and working with Habitat for Humanity.
"I have a lot of goals for Ohio Dominican, with academic success being the top priority," Evans said. "We want to represent Ohio Dominican in the best manner on and off the court and we also want to compete at a high level in the GLIAC. We're not going to sacrifice any of those goals for each other – we want to be the best at all three."
Evans played his collegiate ball at Lawrence University, a Division III school in Wisconsin, where he was a three-year starter and captain. He earned all-conference honors as a senior and helped take Lawrence to the Elite Eight in 2004.
Evans left the basketball realm for several years after graduation, working for CVS Caremark before getting the itch to join the coaching ranks. He re-connected with John Tharp – his former head coach at Lawrence – at Hillsdale as a volunteer assistant in 2007, Tharp's first directing the Chargers, and quickly was promoted to a full-time assistant role.
"Having played for and coached with John Tharp has provided me the best education for this opportunity," Evans said. "I'm well-prepared to step into the head coaching role as I have been exposed to a variety of learning experiences under him."
WHAT THEY'RE SAYING ABOUT DAN EVANS
John Tharp, Head Men's Basketball Coach, Hillsdale College
"This is a great hire for Ohio Dominican. He has a terrific basketball mind and is a tremendous leader. He has the total combination of skills that you are looking for in a basketball coach. He's a great teacher and motivator and is a terrific hire. I couldn't be happier for him and his opportunity at Ohio Dominican."
Mike DeGeorge, Head Men's Basketball Coach, Rhodes College
"It's important to note that he has a tremendous work ethic. I've known Dan since he was in high school and he was a highly intelligent player then, and that has carried through to his coaching. He is dedicated, committed, organized and extremely bright. Dan is a coach with great character and treats the student-athletes with respect. I think he is a great hire for Ohio Dominican."
Contact: Scott Miles