Ron Everhart: Coach on the Rise
Step by step, Ron Everhart has been working his way up to the top of college basketball's coaching ranks. And don't think he's stopping anytime soon. The man has major talent, both as a coach and a recruiter.
In 2000, Northeastern basketball was a mess. It was going nowhere. The program was not hot. In fact, it was rapidly sinking to the bottom of the America East conference.
In 2001, Northeastern hired Everhart as their new head coach. And from that point on, the program has been on the rise.
Credit Everhart for the growing success.
In 2002-03, the Huskies went 16-15, a perfectly respectable record, and a vast improvement over the previous year's 7-21 finish. And last season, the team finished third in the America East with a very impressive 19-13 record.
That's two back-to-back winning seasons in a row; the first time Northeastern has accomplished that feat in 13 years.
Fans have noticed the improvement under Everhart's reign. They'd be blind not to. And, they've reacted accordingly. From 2001-02 to 2003-04, home attendance over the span of those two seasons has increased 82 percent.
Everhart has worked hard to get to where he is today. Prior to running Northeastern, he spent seven years in Lake Charles, Louisiana, coaching the McNeese State University Cowboys. As has been the case at Northeastern, McNeese also achieved nearly instant success upon Everhart's arrival. In just his second year running the program, the team began winning, finishing 15-12 for the season. Everhart's overall record at the school was 92-104. But that record doesn't doesn't tell the whole story. The program enjoyed a steady rise upward, with small rebuilding periods in-between, leading up to a terrific 2000-01 season. That year, after starting 3-6, McNeese won 19 of their next 20 games, and made the NIT. A key player on that squad was Tierre Brown, now with the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers.
Before working at McNeese, Everhart was an assistant coach at Tulane.
Look for Everhart to keep rising up the college basketball coaching ranks, until he reaches the top.
For more, here are notes from the school's official media guide:
“Northeastern is an environment that is full of potential,” Everhart said. “We have the ability to really grow athletically. It’s my goal to build the basketball program into the national prominence our academic areas have right now.”
A 1985 graduate of Virginia Tech, Everhart got his start in college coaching during the 1985-86 season as a graduate assistant to Bobby Cremins at Georgia Tech. He then moved on to a full-time assistant’s role as recruiting coordinator at the Virginia Military Institute for two seasons (1986-88) before taking the position at Tulane.
Everhart played his prep basketball for high school coaching legend Morgan Wootten at DeMatha Catholic High School in Hyattsville, Md., earning first team Catholic Prep All-America honors. Everhart grew up in West Virginia and attended Fairmont West High, lettering basketball and baseball. He then was a four-year letterman at Virginia Tech, serving as team captain as a senior during the 1984-85 season. Everhart was primarily a backup to his college roommate and future NBA standout Dell Curry.
Everhart gained experience on the international stage as the head coach of a U.S. All-Star team that toured Venezuela in the summer of 1999.
It didn’t take Everhart long to start crafting the team in his style as he spent the early months of his tenure searching for multi-faceted guards to fit the high-octane game plan. It was one of the early steps in his mission to return NU basketball to the top of the conference, which the Huskies last won in 1991.
“It’s our intention to be in postseason play every year,” Everhart said. “What we want to do is first establish an identity as a program. I’m someone who believes in representing our program appropriately. We represent an institution of higher learning, and I expect our players to represent themselves accordingly. I want to make sure that when we walk off the floor, win or lose, our opponents respect us. No matter what I want people to say, ‘Man, those guys really play hard.’ ”