Apr 09, 2007
April 9, 2007|
(EDWARDSVILLE, Ill.) Southern Illinois University Edwardsville has selected Lennox Forrester-assistant coach at Bradley University for the past five seasons-as the new head coach of Cougar men's basketball.
Forrester was introduced to the media and the SIUE family Monday at a 4 p.m. news conference in the Vadalabene Center main lobby. "I am confident that Lennox has all the skill sets and the abilities to do an outstanding job," said Dr. Brad Hewitt, SIUE's Director of Intercollegiate Athletics. "As a coach and a teacher of the game, he has demonstrated his commitment to student-athletes on and off the court."
The new coach is charged with taking the helm of the SIUE basketball program, which will spend one more season in NCAA Division II play before making the transition to NCAA Division I action in the 2008-09 season. Forrester becomes the seventh men's basketball coach in school history.
SIUE has shed its "best-kept-secret" label over the past few years in Cougar basketball, advancing to the NCAA Tournament in two out of the last three seasons, including posting 25 wins and an Elite Eight appearance in the 2005-06 season.
After an exhaustive national search, Hewitt said the decision to offer Forrester the position came down to "a superior recruiting strength in our primary areas." Forrester will enthusiastically take "The 'e' " to the next level through his commitment and integrity, Hewitt said. "We decided a new basketball coach needed to reflect SIUE's commitment to excellence, academic integrity, service to the community and commitment to all its students," he said.
Last month, Bradley advanced to the second round of the Mastercard NIT. The 2005-06 season also saw the Braves advance to the NCAA Tournament's Sweet Sixteen. Forrester also spent 10 seasons (1992-2002) as an assistant coach and an administrative assistant for the University of Evansville under Coach Jim Crews.
Forrester earned a bachelor of arts in sociology at Evansville in 1992. He was a junior college All-American at Parkland College before transferring to Evansville to finish his degree. He and his wife, Aretha, have a two-year-old daughter, Calaya.