45 Division I Basketball Coaches Unite As “Team New England” To Combat COVID-19
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Inspired by the unprecedented show of unity among New York’s Division I men’s and women’s basketball coaches, 45 men’s and women’s basketball coaches at 23 Division I schools across New England have come together to form TEAM NEW ENGLAND. As part of the team, each coach will use his or her social media platform to share public health guidelines with their audience in an effort to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Fans can follow the #TEAMNEWENGLAND hashtag on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
Andy Borman, 40, executive director of the RENS, an AAU organization in New York, and Ben Horwitz, 25, a graduate assistant at Syracuse University, both recognized the unique influence college basketball coaches have in their communities and created the TEAM NEW YORK coalition to help communicate critical information to their followers, teams, students, fans, teachers, friends and alumni, during these unprecedented times.
Inspired by the overwhelming movement among New York coaches, Brown men’s basketball coach Mike Martin collaborated with Borman to organize TEAM NEW ENGLAND, gathering all 45 coaches in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont, to help stop the spread of COVID-19 in the region.
“I saw the amazing movement online from the New York coaches this week and was immediately motivated to do our part in New England,” said Martin. “We’re in a unique position to help stop the spread of the novel coronavirus and it’s our duty to do our part and help bring our communities together. Each coach I spoke with immediately stepped up to the challenge and I’m thrilled to bring this unique regional coalition together.”
The head coaches represent all 23 NCAA D1 schools in New England and range from Hall of Fame UConn coach Geno Auriemma to Harvard’s Kathy Delaney-Smith and Tommy Amaker, Providence’s Ed Cooley, UConn’s Danny Hurley, Brown’s Martin and more. They include schools in conferences such as the ACC, Big East, Atlantic-10, Ivy, Patriot, MAAC and more. The full list of TEAM NEW ENGLAND coaches and their affiliations is:
TEAM NEW ENGLAND ROSTER
- Boston College – Jim Christian (Men’s), Joanna Bernabei-McNamee (Women’s)
- Boston University – Joe Fernal Jones (Men’s), Marisa Moseley (Women’s)
- Brown – Mike Martin (Men’s), Monique LeBlanc (Women’s)
- Bryant – Jared Grasso(Men’s), Mary Burke (Women’s)
- Central Connecticut State- Donyell Marshall (Men’s), Kerri Reaves (Women’s)
- Dartmouth- David McLaughlin (Men’s), Belle Koclanes (Women’s)
- Fairfield- Jay Young (Men’s), Joe Frager (Women’s)
- Hartford- John Gallagher (Men’s), Morgan Valley (Women’s)
- Harvard – Tommy Amaker (Men’s), Kathy Delaney-Smith (Women’s)
- Holy Cross – Brett Nelson (Men’s), Maureen Magarity (Women’s)
- Maine – Richard Barron (Men’s), Amy Vachon (Women’s)
- Merrimack- Joe Gallo (Men’s)
- New Hampshire- Bill Herrion (Men’s), Kelsey Hogan (Women’s)
- Northeastern -Bill Coen (Men’s), Kelly Cole (Women’s)
- Providence – Ed Cooley (Men’s), Jim Crowley (Women’s)
- Quinnipiac – Baker Dunleavy (Men’s), Tricia Fabbri (Women’s)
- Rhode Island – David Cox (Men’s), Tammi Reiss (Women’s)
- Sacred Heart – Anthony Latina (Men’s), Jessica Mannetti (Women’s)
- Uconn – Dan Hurley (Men’s), Geno Auriemma (Women’s)
- UMass Amherst – Matt McCall (Men’s), Tory Verdi (Women’s)
- UMass Lowell – Pat Duquette(Men’s), Tom Garrick (Women’s)
- Vermont – John Becker (Men’s), Alisa Kresge (Women’s)
- Yale – James Jones (Men’s), Allison Guth (Women’s)
The simple message points to be stressed on the social media platforms of all 45 TEAM NEW ENGLAND coaches are:
- Practice social distancing and avoid crowds:
○ Stay home as much as possible to help flatten the curve. If you must go out, avoid crowds and keep at least six feet of distance from others.
- Wash your hands and cover your cough:
○ Wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds. Sneeze and cough into a tissue or the corner of your arm.
- Don’t touch your face:
○ Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
- Look out for New Englanders at-risk:
○ Avoid visiting those at risk and offer help in getting groceries and goods in a socially distant manner.
- Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects:
○ Using soap and water, a bleach and water solution or EPA-approved household products, wash commonly touched surfaces regularly.
- Wear a cloth face covering in public settings:
○ Cloth face coverings can be made at home and can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure.
Borman, who played on the 2001 Duke NCAA championship team said, “We created this movement because we were inspired by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s leadership during this time of crisis. Our hope was that other states and regions would take up the charge and help bring it to their communities. We’re so thrilled that Coach Martin and all the other amazing coaches have stepped up to help lead their communities. We’ve always believed basketball is a family and this movement has proven how wonderful the people in basketball are.”
TEAM NEW YORK quickly took off in New York with posts from Hall of Famers like Iona’s Rick Pitino and Syracuse’s Jim Boeheim as well as coaches like Buffalo’s Felisha Legette-Jack and Fordham’s Stephanie Gaitley.
Founded by Peabody Award-winning filmmaker and playwright Dan Klores (most recently director of the 20-hour, 10-part epic on ESPN ,“BASKETBALL: A LOVE STORY”), The RENS, or New York Renaissance Basketball Association, equips inner city athletes with the tools necessary to maximize their life potential on and off the basketball court.
Fans can follow along via the coaches’ social media channels and the hashtags #TEAMNEWENGLAND and #TEAMNEWYORK.