Shaheen Holloway introduced as Seton Hall’s new men’s basketball coach, acclaimed by former Saint Peter players

SOUTH ORANGE, NJ – It’s not a surprise that coach Shaheen Holloway got a job as head coach at Seton Hall.

Pirates’ career supports leadership and star of the college coach scene after casting Cinderella Saint Peter’s in the Elite Eight, he’s the only person sports director Bryan Felt has considered after Kevin Willard left the job in Maryland 10 days ago.

If there was a surprise on Thursday when Holloway was introduced to a small Walsh Arena crowd of about 1,000, 15 players from his flourishing Saint Peter team were in the stands to attend. clapping his hands.

“It says a lot about Shaheen,” Felt said of the Peacocks being there to celebrate their former coach. “It says a lot about him. It says a lot. What he puts in, he gets back.”

This is Felt’s second time hiring Holloway. He was Saint Peter’s sporting director when Holloway was hired in 2018. Felt took the job at Seton Hall in 2019 and rehired Holloway on Wednesday.

The Peacocks of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference became the first 15th seed to make it to the Elite Eight. Their run to Round 4 of the Finals was halted Sunday in a 69-49 loss to North Carolina.

“I wouldn’t be here without those 15 young men,” Holloway said shortly after being introduced. It was a comment that sparked the second of three standing ovations the Peacocks received. The first is when they walk in.

Holloway said he spoke with the Peacocks for three hours on Wednesday, shortly before Seton Hall announced his hiring. He said it was extremely hard to leave the show that he led for 4 seasons. He said the players made it easy for him, even teasing the 45-year-old, who spent eight seasons as Pirates assistant coach.

To replace Willard, Holloway is taking over a Big East program that has featured in five of the past six NCAA tournaments. It would be six out of seven if the pandemic hadn’t canceled the 2020 event.

Holloway, whose Peacocks beat Kentucky, Murray State and Purdue in the NCAA tournament, said he would bring Saint Peter’s back to the Pirates’ schedule after a four-year absence. He is also out of words about how important it is to him to get this job.

“I can’t mess this up and I’m not going to mess this up,” he said. “When you’re at home, it’s too important. It’s the difference. It’s the big difference, like you put in more time, more effort, more sweat, more tears. is all it takes to get the chance to coach at my alma mater. Me” I’m not going to spoil this opportunity. “

Holloway said he took a walk around Walsh Gym Wednesday night and it brought back a lot of memories.

“I’m lucky, I’m humble,” he said. “It was unbelievable to me,” Holloway said.

Holloway said he’s felt drained and exhausted over the past two weeks. The emotional burden peaked on Sunday when his grandmother, Dorothy Holloway, passed away. She raised him.

She had told him that she wanted to be buried in Seton Hall and that Holloway would try to fulfill her wish.

His desire is to improve the Pirates program.

“I want to take it to the next level, you always want to take it to the next level,” says Holloway. “It’s going to be hard work. It’s going to be hard.”

Seeing the Seton Hall players in the stands, Holloway told them to get ready to work.

Seton Hall junior striker Tyrese Samuel said Holloway is probably the most talked about coach in the country at the moment and he is looking forward to working with him. He added that the success of Holloway will put pressure on the Pirates.

“Oh that’s right,” said Samuel. “I think as a player, I think you want to keep going where he left off. You know, he brought a great team, Saint Peter’s, to the Elite Eight and here he is. try to do the same thing. There’s no time to rest.”

Holloway said he hopes to have a say in finding his replacement at Saint Peter’s, but added that sporting director Rachelle Paul will do his job well.

Doug Edert, guardian of the Peacocks – with his distinctive mustache – is happy to see Holloway rewarded. Holloway will likely make nearly $2.5 million a year at Seton Hall, nearly 10 times what he gets at the Jesuit school in Jersey City, New Jersey, less than 20 miles away.

“We’re all happy for him and all he’s done,” Edert said. “Great.”

That’s how Holloway described it when he returned to Seton Hall.

Holloway played prominently for four years at Seton Hall from 1996 to 2000 and helped lead the team to the round of 16 Sweet in 2000. He won in extra time to beat Oregon in the first round. He was inducted into the school’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 2012. Shaheen Holloway introduced as Seton Hall’s new men’s basketball coach, acclaimed by former Saint Peter players

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