UAlbany men’s basketball’s Killings’ coaches clinic features former Siena coach Hewitt

UAlbany men’s basketball head coach Dwayne Killings interviews with media before practice at SEFCU Arena in Albany on Monday, June 27, 2022.
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UAlbany men’s basketball head coach Dwayne Killings interviews with media before practice at SEFCU Arena in Albany on Monday, June 27, 2022.

ALBANY A UAlbany men’s basketball coaches clinic will feature a familiar face to Capital Region basketball followers.

Paul Hewitt, who guided Siena to 66 wins and an NCAA tournament in three seasons leading the Saints, is among a batch of speakers at a clinic Thursday that Great Danes head coach Dwayne Killings has put together. The free event, which required participants to register in advance, will start at 9 a.m. at Maple Avenue Middle School in Saratoga Springs.

“What I’m hoping that it creates is an opportunity for people to grow and learn, but then also an opportunity for some young coaches to shake a head coach’s hand, and get to know them and create relationships,” Killings said of the event. “These are some of the experiences that I had when I was kind of rising up through the business.”

The 2022-23 season will be Killings’ second as head coach for UAlbany. From his years as an assistant coach, Killings knew Hewitt, and he said the one-time Saints head coach spoke glowingly about the opportunity for someone to start a head-coaching career in the Capital Region. Killings said Hewitt was one of his first calls after deciding to take the job at UAlbany.

“He was awesome, just talking about the area and how much he loved it, and just how much he thought this is a really great place,” Killings said.

Killings arrived at UAlbany after serving as an associate head coach at Marquette, while Hewitt became Siena’s head coach prior to the 1997-98 season following several seasons as an assistant coach at Villanova. At Siena, Hewitt inherited a program coming off three losing seasons, then led the Saints to 17-, 25- and 24-win seasons before departing to become the head coach at Georgia Tech. Hewitt spent 11 seasons at Georgia Tech, and netted a 190–162 record and an appearance in the 2004 national title game with that program. Georgia Tech lost that 2004 final to a UConn team that featured future NBA draft lottery picks Ben Gordon and Emeka Okafor. 

After Georgia Tech, Hewitt coached four seasons at George Mason and has spent the last several years working for the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers. This past season, Hewitt coached the Clippers’ G League affiliate.

Besides Hewitt and the UAlbany men’s basketball coaching staff, speakers at Thursday’s clinic include Colgate head coach Matt Langel, Towson head coach Pat Skerry, New Hampshire head coach Bill Herrion, Cleveland Cavaliers assistant coach JJ Outlaw, Long Island Nets assistant coach Jimmie Oakman and CBS Sports/247Sports basketball analyst Adam Finkelstein.

“When we first got here, [putting on a coaching clinic] was part of our plan,” Killings said. “Last year, we were hitting the ground running, and you’re trying to put together a staff, get your players and all that — and it just got away from us. But we were committed to doing it. The idea is to grow the game here in the community — and the Capital Region is very passionate about basketball.”

That was one of the messages Hewitt delivered to Killings regarding coaching in the Albany area. The Great Danes head coach said he was thrilled Hewitt could be involved in this week’s event.

“I was really glad and humbled that he was willing to come out here and spend a day with us,” Killings said.

More: All Sports | All UAlbany

Categories: College Sports, Siena College, Sports, Sports, UAlbany

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