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Tommy Dempsey was hired as Binghamton’s new head men’s basketball coach on May 24, 2012 and with strong recruiting and unwavering integrity, Dempsey is quickly building the NCAA Division I Bearcats into a formidable program in the Northeast. A recent inductee into the Northeast Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame, Dempsey begins his second year at the helm in 2013-14.
The 39-year-old Scranton, Pa. native came directly from Rider University (N.J.), where he served as head coach for seven seasons.
Taking over a BU program that was on the downswing, Dempsey quickly brought in a show-stopper in freshman recruit Jordan Reed, who was one of the nation’s elite rookies in 2012-13. Under Dempsey’s tutelage, Reed nearly averaged a double-double as a freshman and his acrobatics reinvigorated the Binghamton faithful, who have returned to the Events Center to watch Dempsey’s fast-tempo style.
Bringing in an established Division I head coach with notable success was a strong step forward for Binghamton’s relatively young Division I athletics program. Dempsey guided the Broncs to national postseason tournaments in three of his last five years and his teams averaged 17 wins per season during his tenure.
Equally important, Dempsey’s student-athletes have a proven track record of academic accomplishment under his leadership. His Rider program received the NCAA Public Recognition Award four times in his last five years for having an APR score in the top 10 percent in the country, including three perfect scores. Every four-year player in his program has graduated.
“Tommy Dempsey is a great hire for Binghamton University,” said University President Harvey G. Stenger at the 2012 press conference. “He has a track record of competitive and academic success that will bring energy to our men’s basketball program. I am looking forward to watching the program grow under his guidance.”
In his seven-year tenure, Rider had the third-most total wins of any program in the MAAC (behind only Siena and Fairfield) and has more wins than any program in the Metropolitan area – more than Seton Hall, Hofstra, St. John’s and Princeton among others.
“Tommy’s basketball credentials are impressive to say the least,” Director of Athetics Patrick Elliott said. “However his demonstrated commitment to academic excellence and student-athlete welfare is equally impressive. As we narrowed our strong candidate pool, Tommy stood out and the more we spoke, it became clear to me that we shared a similar vision for the future of the program. Tommy Dempsey is a great addition to the University, our athletics department and the greater Binghamton community.”
Dempsey, widely considered a talented and charismatic head coach, posted a 119-105 career record at Rider, which competes in the basketball-rich Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC).
“This is an exciting time to be a part of Binghamton University,” Dempsey said when he took the position. “I am looking forward to getting on the court with the players this summer and establishing our culture as a program. I am also excited to get on the phone with recruits and their families and let them know that we have a great university and basketball program. I am anxious to get to work.”
Dempsey has established the school record for wins at three different colleges and has been named Coach of the Year four times in nine years as a head coach.
At Rider, Dempsey steered two different teams to 23-win seasons. His 2007-08 squad, led by current NBA player Jason Thompson, captured the MAAC regular season crown and played in the College Basketball Invitational. Thompson, who was recruited by Dempsey, was a lottery pick, taken 12th by the Sacramento Kings in the 2008 NBA Draft.
Dempsey was named the 2008 MAAC Coach of the Year and also was presented with the Peter A. Carlesimo Award as the Division I Metropolitan Basketball Writers Association Coach of the Year. His program produced seven all-conference players, including the Player of the Year.
Dempsey’s Broncs won 19 games in 2008-09 and were selected to the CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament. After a 17-win campaign one year later, Rider went 23-11 in 2010-11, knocking off USC and TCU before returning to the postseason. That four-year span (2007-10) resulted in 82 wins – the most in any four-year span in Rider school history.
Prior to taking the reins at Rider, Dempsey was an assistant coach with the Broncs from 2003-05. His recruiting for head coach Don Harnum helped lead to a regular-season MAAC title in 2005 and the foundation for the program’s pending success.
After serving as an interim head coach in 2005-06, Dempsey, the third-youngest Division I head coach in the country at the time, doubled the team’s win total in his first full year as head coach in 2006-07. His 16-win Broncs team reached the MAAC quarterfinals and was the only team (out of eight) in New Jersey to post a winning record.
Prior to his time at Rider, Dempsey took two different schools to the NJCAA Final Four, including a trip to the national championship game in 2003. In three years as head coach at the junior college level, his compiled an 88-12 record, including a perfect 46-0 mark at home. He was twice a finalist for National Coach of the Year honors.
At Lackawanna College, Dempsey took his team to the Division II national championship game in 2003 and was the Region 19 and District 9 Coach of the Year. He inherited a team that wasn’t in the preseason top 40 and finished national runnerup with a school-record 33 wins (33-4).
Dempsey spent two seasons at Keystone College and compiled a 55-8 record. After inheriting an 11-12 team, Dempsey led the 2000-01 squad to 26 wins and a conference title in his first season, earning Eastern Pennsylvania Collegiate Conference Coach of the Year honors. In 2001-02, Keystone won a school-record 29 games and advanced to the NJCAA Final Four and Dempsey was the Region 19 and District 6 Coach of the Year and a finalist for national coach of the year.
He began his head coaching career at age 24 at Wyoming Preparatory School in 1999. Before that, Dempsey served as an assistant coach for two years at his alma mater, Susquehanna University (1997-99).
As a player, Dempsey was a three-year letterwinner and team captain at Susquehanna before graduating with a bachelor’s degree in sociology in 1997. He earned his master’s degree in early childhood education from Bloomsburg University in 2005 and was a second grade teacher before turning his attention to coaching.
Tommy and his wife, Amy, have four children: Tommy (13), Emily (11), Brian (6) and Tyler (3).
Luber, who worked three years with head coach Tommy Dempsey while the two were at Rider, was hired in June, 2012 and begins his second season with the Bearcats in 2013-14 - the first as associate head coach.
“Ben is a basketball junkie,” Dempsey said. “He eats, drinks, and sleeps the game and he has a bright future as a basketball coach.”
Luber served three seasons on Dempsey’s staff with the Broncs, earning a promotion from director of operations after his first year and spending the last two seasons as an assistant coach.
He was a four-year point guard and letterwinner at Penn State, where he was a two-time team captain in the Big Ten Conference. He ranks among the Nittany Lions’ top-10 in career assists (418) and steals (125). As a junior, Luber helped Penn State advance to the National Invitation Tournament as the team’s Most Improved Player. As a freshman, he was an Honorable Mention Freshman All-American selection by Street & Smith magazine.
After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology in 2007 (3.3 GPA in major), Luber played professionally in Israel and Iceland.
In high school, Luber was a first team all-state honoree (2003) and set school records for career points (1,969), assists (562) and steals (236). He led his Council Rock North team to the Pennsylvania Sweet 16 and was twice named the Bucks County Player of the Year.
At Rider, Luber was part of a staff that produced a school-record 23 wins in 2010-11. He was in charge of guard play and his unit finished in the nation’s top-10 in three-point field goal percentage.
Sims, a former Syracuse University standout, was hired in June, 2012 and begins his second season with the Bearcats in 2013-14.
A former point guard for the Orange, has served as SU’s coordinator of player development since 2007.
“Laz has had tremendous experiences in the game of basketball and he enjoys sharing his experiences as a player with our players, Dempsey said.”
Sims, a native of Syracuse, was a four-year letterwinner for coach Jim Boeheim and as a senior, led the Orange to the 1996 NCAA championship game. After a professional career that spanned more than 12 years, Sims joined Boeheim’s staff in 2007 and has coordinated all personal, career and life skills development of the Syracuse men’s basketball players for the last five years.
After scoring 1,162 points and earning McDonald’s All-America honors at Henninger High School, Sims produced a noteworthy collegiate career at Syracuse, playing on three NCAA tournament teams and graduating with the seventh-highest career assists total in program history. As a senior, he averaged 7.4 assists and led the 1995-96 SU team to the national championship game, where it lost to Kentucky. His 281 assists are the fourth-best single-season total in school history.
Sims graduated with a bachelor’s degree in child and family studies in 1996 and embarked on a professional playing career that included stints overseas, in multiple U.S. basketball leagues (CBA, USBL, IBA, IBL, ABA) and a tenure with the famed Harlem Globetrotters. He won six titles, was a three-time all-star and is the only player in Rochester semi-pro history to have his jersey retired (Rochester RazorSharks in 2008).
Lazarus and his wife, Daphne, have four children: Da’Joura, Lazarus Jr., Lae’jon and Da’Zya.
Goodman brought more than a decade of Division I coaching and administrative experience to the table when he was hired in May 2013. He begins his first season as an assistant with the program in 2013-14.
He came directly from CSU-Bakersfield, where he served as associate head coach the past two seasons. While there, Goodman was actively involved in a program that recorded its first winning season at the Division I level in 2011-12 and earned a bid to the post-season CIT.
Prior to his stint at Cal-State Bakersfield, Goodman was at Oklahoma for five seasons. He was the Director of Basketball Operations from 2006-10 and was an assistant coach during the 2010-11 campaign. In 2009 the Sooners went 30-6, climbed to No. 2 in the polls and advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament. While at Oklahoma, Goodman helped coach four NBA draft picks including current Los Angeles Clipper All-Star Blake Griffin.
From 2000-06, Goodman was an assistant coach at Bucknell University. The Bison won the Patriot League title in 2005 and 2006, advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament both seasons. Goodman aided the Bison in finishing the 2005-06 season with a 27-5 ranking and a No. 25 national ranking.
A 1996 graduate of Barat College, Goodman got his start in coaching at his alma mater as an assistant coach from 1996-98. He then became an assistant coach at Susquehanna University from 1998-00. It was in his second year at Susquehanna that Dempsey was also an assistant coach on the staff.
“I am excited that Bryan is coming to Binghamton,” Dempsey said. “We coached together as young assistants and we have remained close for many years. He is a talented coach and he has helped build successful programs in his career. Bryan will be a great addition to our staff as we continue to grow our program.”
Courtney, a former All-CAA selection for University of Delaware (2004-08), joined the program in late August 2012 and serves as the coordinator of player development.
He has played professionally in Argentina, Israel and Turkey and spent the last two seasons as an assistant coach at Penn State Abington.
“I coached against Herb when he was a player at Delaware and he was a heck of a player,” Dempsey said. “We are excited to give him his first coaching opportunity at the Division I level. I have great confidence that he will be a great coach moving forward.”
At Delaware, 6-foot-6 forward Courtney finished his career ranked 10th in scoring with 1,291 career points (11.4 avg.). He also amassed 649 rebounds and is one of just eight Blue Hen players to reach the 1,200-point, 600-rebound mark. As a senior in 2007-08, Courtney averaged 14.1 points and 6.2 rebounds and was a repeat selection as team MVP. He was a second team All-CAA forward in 2007 and a first-team Preseason All-CAA in 2008.
Courtney earned his bachelor’s degree in hotel restaurant institutional management in 2008 with a minor in business. He held a 3.0 GPA in his major.
He played professionally oversees in Argentina in 2008 and in Turkey and Israel in 2009.
In August 2010 he joined the staff at Penn State Abington and last season the team tripled its win total from the previous year, thanks to a recruiting class that included the conference rookie of the year and the league’s top rebounder and top three-point shooter.
Since August he has worked as an account manager at TEKsystems in Philadelphia.