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Bob Bolen is entering his first season with the ETSU men’s basketball program, having joined the Buccaneers as an assistant coach in June of 2013.
Prior to coming to Johnson City, Bolen spent 19 seasons as a highly successful head coach at Mountain State University in Beckley, W.Va. During that time span, Bolen’s teams combined for an impressive 487-123 record and his squads consistently ranked as some of the country’s most offensively dynamic teams at the NAIA level.
“What Bob did at Mountain State was really impressive,” said ETSU head coach Murry Bartow. “He is highly respected throughout the coaching ranks, and what he did both as a recruiter and in player development was something we wanted to bring to ETSU. He’s a great person with a wonderful family, and I think he is a great addition to our program.
Bolen said he looks forward to helping ETSU succeed, especially on the offensive end.
“During my time at Mountain State, we were ranked in the Top 5 nationally in scoring for 17 straight seasons,” Bolen said. “I enjoyed coaching transition and early-offense basketball, and that’s what I hope I can bring to this program.”
Bolen arrived at Mountain State University in 1993 to rebuild a basketball program which had been terminated following the 1977 season. Under his guidance, the Cougars rose to the top of the NAIA in basketball.
In 2004, MSU became National Champions with a 74-70 victory over California's Concordia University in the NAIA tournament. Bolen was named the 2004 NAIA National Coach of the Year, 2004 Basketball Times National Coach of the Year, and 2004 West Virginia AP College Coach of the Year. He was also named the 2010 NABC National Coach of the year.
Under Bolen's tutelage, 26 former players have continued on to successful professional basketball careers.