The six finalists for the 2016 Red Auerbach College Coach of the Year Award were announced today. The Red Auerbach Award is given annually to the nation’s top Jewish college coach, as voted on by the members of the Jewish Coaches Association (JCA). The winner will be presented with the award at the Final Four in Houston, Texas.
Keith Dambrot – University of Akron
In his 12th season coaching the University of Akron, Keith Dambrot helped guide the Zips to a 26-9 record, a regular season Mid-America Conference (MAC) title and a trip to the National Invitation Tournament (NIT).
Steve DeMeo- Northwest Florida State College
In his 3nd season, Coach Steve DeMeo led the Northwest Florida State College Raiders to a 27-6 record as well as the Panhandle Conference regular season and FCSAA Region VIII tournament titles.
Eran Ganot- University of Hawaii
In his rookie season as head coach of the University of Hawaii, Eran Ganot led the Rainbow Warriors to a 28-6 record, Big West Conference regular season and tournament titles, and an upset of No. 4 seeded California-Berkeley in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament. The 28 wins are the most in program history, and the victory over Cal was the first tournament win ever for UH.
Ryan Marks – University of St. Francis
In his 3rd season at the helm of the University of St. Francis, Coach Ryan Marks led the Fighting Saints to a 28-4 record, a 1st place finish in the Southern Division of the Chicago Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) and a trip to the NAIA National Tournament.
Bob Pietrack – Fort Lewis College
In his 1st season as head coach of Fort Lewis College, Bob Bietrack led the Skyhawks to a 28-4 record, the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) regular season and tournament titles, and a trip to the NCAA DII National Tournament. The Skyhawks close the year with an overall record of 28-4 and a final national ranking of No. 4. The 28 wins are the most in program history.
Josh Schertz – Lincoln Memorial University
In his 8th season on the sidelines for Lincoln Memorial University, Josh Schertz led the Railsplitters to yet another banner season, including a 32-2 overall record, Southern Atlantic Conference (SAC) regular season and tournament titles, a No.1 overall ranking and a trip to the Division II Elite 8 in Frisco, Texas.
In 2010 the Jewish Coaches Association named its college coach of the year award after Red Auerbach, the coaching legend who won 938 games (a record at his retirement) and nine National Basketball Association (NBA) championships as a coach. As general manager and team president of the Celtics, he won an additional seven NBA titles, for a grand total of 16 in a span of 29 years, making him one of the most successful team officials ever in the history of professional sports.