The Capilano University basketball program may have a bit more of a clubby atmosphere next season as two Lower Mainland basketball academy owners have been named as the head coaches of the Blues men's and women's teams.
On the men's side Dwayne Selby, former coach of the highly successful senior boys team at Vancouver's St. George's School as well as the founder of the allBall Academy, takes over for Jordan Yu. For the Blues women it'll be Ramin Sadaghiani behind the bench, replacing longtime Capilano coach Paul Chiarenza. Sadaghiani is co-owner and executive director of North Vancouver's 3D Basketball Academy and has also spent the past two years as an assistant coach with the University of British Columbia's women's team.
Both coaches have taken unique paths to get to this position by burnishing their reputations through their club programs.
"Back in the day it seemed to be there was only one way to get to the higher levels of coaching," Sadaghiani told the North Shore News. "It might have been through the provincial program or through Basketball Canada or things like that. It's kind of neat that there's opportunities for people
who have kind of developed themselves through club systems."
Sadaghiani, a Handsworth grad and North Vancouver native, is a very familiar face on the North Shore basketball scene. Prior to joining the staff at UBC, he helped coach teams at Sutherland secondary before moving on to help lead the back-to-back provincial championship Handsworth senior girls teams. Through his academy he has worked with almost all of the North Shore girls players who have gone on to university careers in recent years.
"I've been coaching on the North Shore, so having the opportunity to grow not only basketball in the province but specifically in North Vancouver, that's just an exciting opportunity for me," Sadaghiani said.
This is Sadaghiani's first head coaching gig at the postsecondary level but he said his work with other great coaches has helped prepare him for the task.
"(Handsowrth's) Scott Palmer was a very good guy at building team chemistry. (UBC's) Deb Huband was so good with fundamentals and Xs and Os. Different people that I've had the opportunity to work with -- I bring all those pieces with me to Cap."
Selby is also an old North Shore friend -- the Toronto native played two seasons with Capilano from 2000 to 2002 and this year started a new chapter of his allBall Academy in North Vancouver.
"I really enjoyed my time at Cap and all the people there were great," said Selby. "It was a great time. For me to be able to come home, so to speak, and give back to a program that helped me so much, it's a unique opportunity."
Both coaches stressed the desire to make use of the wealth of basketball talent coming out of the North Shore
"It is of the utmost importance for us to keep the North Shore connections, keep North Shore kids coming to our program," said Selby. "We want Cap to be the place that our North Shore players are looking to go to first."