Staten Island, NY -- Wagner Head Men’s Basketball Coach Bashir Mason has rounded out his coaching staff with the appointment of former UMass standout and most recently the Director of Basketball Operations at Auburn University, Mike Babul, as an assistant coach. Babul joins Scott Smith and Marquis Webb as assistant coaches for the upcoming season.
“Mike brings with him close to 10 years of college coaching experience and has worked with some of the nation’s top college basketball programs (Auburn, Drexel, Memphis and the University of Texas El Paso (UTEP),” said Mason.
Babul served under head coach Tony Barbee the last two seasons at Auburn University and before that in the same capacity for four seasons at UTEP. Over those six seasons, Babul managed the budget, organized on-campus recruiting, oversaw student-athlete athletic enhancement, coordinated scheduling and served as a camp/clinic director while fostering alumni relations. During that time, UTEP advanced to the 2010 NCAA Tournament and the 2009 College Basketball Invitational (CBI) Finals.
"I am very excited that Mike gets on the road and gets to recruit,” said Barbee. “I have known him since he was 17 years old, and he will be an outstanding addition to the Wagner coaching staff. He has a very bright future in the coaching profession. He has had a plethora of responsibilities for myself and our staff and has been nothing but the best. You won't find a better person than Mike Babul."
Prior to his tenure at UTEP, Babul worked under Drexel University head coach James “Bruiser” Flint as the Dragons’ Director of Basketball Operations, where his duties mirrored his responsibilities from Auburn and UTEP. During his one season in Philadelphia, he helped Drexel advance to the Preseason National Invitation Tournament (NIT) Final Four, where the Dragons dropping a heartbreaking one-point decision to eventual National Runner-Up UCLA.
“I’ve known Mike since I was a student-athlete, and as a player I noticed his unbelievable pride and work ethic in his job,” added Mason. “I’m confident he will do a great job recruiting and developing our players here at Wagner.”
Babul worked as an assistant coach Youngstown State University during the 2004-2005 season after starting his collegiate career as the Director of Basketball Operations under John Calipari at Memphis in 2003-2004.
“I am excited and thankful for the opportunity to assist Coach Mason in continuing to build the Wagner Basketball Program,” said Babul. “I respected the way Bashir carried himself on and off the court while a student-athlete at Drexel. It’s those leadership qualities that have gotten him to where he is today, and why he has such a promising future ahead of him.”
Babul, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Sports Management, was a four-year letterwinner and a three-year starter at UMass from 1996-2000, while helping lead the Minutemen to a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances. During his time in Amherst, he also was a three-year selection to the Atlantic 10 All-Defensive and All-Academic Teams (1997-2000). Prior to his time at UMass, he played his prep ball under his father, long-time North Attleboro High School coach Mike, and was the 1996 Massachusetts Player of the Year as a senior while being named a Fourth Team Parade Magazine All-American.