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March 12, 1999

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Bobby Gonzalez, an assistant coach in the University of Virginia men’s basketball program for the past year, is the new men’s head basketball coach at Manhattan College. His appointment was announced on Friday (March 12).

Gonzalez spent the last six years as an assistant coach with Virginia head coach Pete Gillen. He was an assistant with Gillen for one year at Xavier University and for four years at Providence College before coming to Virginia. Prior to joining the staff at Xavier, Gonzalez was an assistant high school coach in New York City at Rice High School from 1991-93 and at St. Nicholas of Tolentine from 1988-91.

“I’m excited about coming back to the metropolitan area with an opportunity to run my own program,” Gonzalez said.

A native of Binghamton, N.Y., Gonzalez was a three-year basketball letter winner at Binghamton High School, where he established the record for career assists. After playing two years of junior college basketball at Broome Community College, Gonzalez moved on to Buffalo State University. At Buffalo State he helped the team earn the number one ranking in Division III as a junior. He served as team captain his senior year. Gonzalez graduated from Buffalo State in 1986 with a degree in communications-broadcast journalism.

He went on to play professional basketball for one summer in Puerto Rico. After one year of substitute teaching in Binghamton, Gonzalez moved to New York City for his coaching stops at St. Nicholas of Tolentine and Rice High School.

Tolentine was ranked the number one high school team in the country by USA Today in 1988 and the two teams he worked with at Rice High School both earned national top-five honors.

During his time in New York City, Gonzalez helped coach four McDonald’s All-Americans: Malik Sealy, Brian Reese, Adrian Autry and Felipe Lopez.

“We are fortunate to add such a bright, energetic and talented coach as Bobby Gonzalez,” said Manhattan Director of Athletics Bob Byrnes. “He has worked successfully at other great programs such as Virginia, Providence and Xavier. He is well regarded in the New York City area and has a fine reputation for evaluating and recruiting impact players. Bobby Gonzalez brings the entire package. He’s a great recruiter, a great communicator and he knows the game.”

A veteran of the Five-Star Basketball Camps, Gonzalez has quickly established himself in coaching and recruiting circles. He was cited in the 1998-99 college basketball issue of The Sporting News as one of three assistant coaches in the nation most likely to be the head coach of a Division I program in the near future. Eastern Basketball ranked him among the top 10 recruiters in the East in 1995.

“I’m thrilled for Bobby Gonzalez and his family,” Gillen said. “The head coaching position at Manhattan is a tremendous opportunity for him. He did a great job for me for six years and he’s ready for this position. I hate to lose him, but it’s a great opportunity for him. He’ll do a phenomenal job at Manhattan.”

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