Shoes squeaking and the sound of the ball going through the nylon net. Two signs that basketball season is upon us. October 15th was the official first day of practice for college basketball teams and here at Alvernia University on Jack McCloskey Court, plenty of hard of work is being done to ensure success this coming season.When it comes to Alvernia, basketball is a hot commodity and the entire student body attends the home games, providing a great atmosphere and home court advantage for the Golden Wolves (if you were not aware, the nickname has been changed from Crusaders to Golden Wolves).
Coming off of a 15-11 regular season record, the Golden Wolves look to improve on a season that left them with the number 4 seed in the MAC Commonwealth conference playoffs, where they lost in the first round to Lebanon Valley by a score of 76-66. Recently, Alvernia was ranked fifth in the preseason rankings, which says that the Golden Wolves have a good group of returners that can lead the team to another playoff berth. Everything with Alvernia starts with the coaching staff and how they put their players in the best positions to succeed on the court. The coaching staff consists of head coach Mike Miller Sr., assistant coach Terry Miller, brother to head coach Mike Miller Sr., assistant coach and Alvernia basketball alum Christopher Davis, and assistant coach Joe Linderman.
The coaches are constantly testing the skills of every player making sure that the team is in the best position possible to win games. Assistant coach Terry Miller also praises his brother and head coach Miller Sr. He went to say “Almost everything i know about basketball comes from my younger brother Mike, and the system we both learned in the Reading School District under coach and Athletic Director, Jim Gano.”. Having assistants that appreciate and buy into the system that is trying to be implemented makes the head coach’s job that much easier. The head coach just needs to acquire the players that best fit the system and coach Miller Sr believes that he has a group of guys that can compete on a high level. He went on to say “We have a really good group of guys here with us and practices have been very competitive. As a coaching staff we have many guys that we can put in different spots which only helps us immensely. If everyone can buy into the philosophy that the coaching staff is trying to put forth, then the sky’s the limit”.