The Niagara University community gathered on April 2 to welcome Patrick Beilein as its 22nd men’s basketball head coach.
A rising star in the coaching profession, Beilein was a former NCAA Division I student-athlete as well as a coach at the NBA, and NCAA Division I and II levels.
"Patrick Beilein has demonstrated as a player and a coach, on and off the court, that he is a person of high character and personifies our Catholic and Vincentian mission," said Niagara University president Rev. James J. Maher, C.M. "His credentials as a coach and as a leader make him the ideal candidate to lead the Purple Eagles. I also want to recognize Simon Gray and members of our university community for their quick and thorough review of impressive candidates and for welcoming Patrick and his family to the Niagara University community."
Beilein spent the last four years elevating the Le Moyne Dolphins, an NCAA Division II program in Syracuse, N.Y., to new heights. Under Beilein's tutelage, the Dolphins qualified for the NCAA Tournament in three consecutive seasons (2017-19) for the first time since 1964-66, won three consecutive NE10 Southwest Division titles, and advanced to the program's first-ever NCAA Tournament Quarterfinals appearance (2017-18).
"Our belief that Niagara basketball is a powerful brand was validated by this search process," said Simon Gray, Niagara University director of athletics. "The interest in our position was international and the candidate pool was stocked with incredible achievements. However, it quickly became evident that Patrick Beilein is the ideal choice to lead our basketball program."
A two-time Northeast-10 Conference Coach of the Year recipient, Beilein had a record of 77-41, including 55-25 in conference games, in four seasons at Le Moyne. His 67-24 record in his final three seasons was the best record in the NE10.
"My family and I are very excited to have this opportunity to be the next men's basketball head coach at Niagara University and to be back in Niagara County and Western New York," said Beilein. "I am so grateful to Father Maher and Simon Gray. From the beginning of this process, they have showed great faith and confidence in my ability to rebuild this basketball program. I am impressed with their commitment to the future of the university, the athletic department, and our basketball program."
Beilein's teams also excelled academically, averaging eight student-athletes named to the NE10 Academic Honor Roll each semester, and were involved in the local community.
Beilein served as the player development coach for the NBA's Utah Jazz in 2014 after a two-year stint as head coach for West Virginia Wesleyan College, an NCAA Division II program in Buckhannon, W.V. Prior to West Virginia Wesleyan, Beilein spent one season as the director of basketball operations at Bradley University, an NCAA Division I program, and was an assistant coach at Dartmouth College for the 2010-11 season. He started his coaching career as a graduate assistant coach at the University of Michigan, under his father and current head coach, John Beilein, from 2008-10.
"I am excited to meet the team, hire a staff, begin workouts, and hit the road recruiting," said Beilein. "I look forward to meeting the Niagara University students, faculty, and staff. My family and I plan on becoming entrenched in the local community as we renew interest in Niagara University basketball one fan at a time."
Beilein was a four-year letterwinner at West Virginia University from 2002-06, where he played for his father John, who earned a master's degree in education from Niagara University. A prolific shooter, he scored 1,001 career points and his career 242 three-pointers are third all-time. Beilein was a member of two NCAA Tournament and one NIT Tournament teams. As a senior co-captain, Beilein helped West Virginia advanced to the 2006 NCAA Tournament Sweet 16. The year before, the Mountaineers reached the 2005 NCAA Tournament Elite 8 in Albuquerque, where he was selected to the All-Region team. Beilein earned a bachelor's degree from West Virginia in 2006.