Coach Sees Winning Tradition Beginning

MaryAnne Vanness

At 28-years-old, Drew Kelly enters his second year as Bucks basketball’s head coach. Kelly celebrates his second wedding anniversary this week, but is already starting to focus on the season ahead. Already 2003 has been deemed a major growth year for his program.

“This has been a turn around year for us and we have improved dramatically,” Bucks Athletic Director Dr. Priscilla Rice said.

In his first season as head coach Kelly’s team amassed thirteen wins. The team made it to the Eastern Pennsylvania Collegiate Conference (EPPC) Semi-Finals before falling to Philadelphia Community College.

“Coaching is something that I love and want to grow with,” Kelly said. “Your job is based on your performance.”

Kelly is a committed basketball coach who cares for his team players as individuals and has established a deep relationship with them.

“He has a passion and desire that I like in a coach,” Dr. Rice said. “He never misses practice and is always on time.”

When Kelly came to Bucks he didn’t know what to expect. He had a committed team to work with and the success of his first season has helped the basketball program prosper.

“I gave Bucks the best effort I have,” Kelly said. “When you work hard it shows in the success of the game and you want to build on that success.”

Kelly is more than just a coach to his players, though. There’s an emotional investment for a coach, he must be disciplinarian, friend and confidant to his kids.

“You have to be there for your players – it’s more than what people think,” Kelly said. “When the players have problems, it shows emotionally in their performance and problems that students have need to addressed.”

“He’s a coach that would go the extra mile for his team,” Dr. Rice said.

Kelly started his coaching career as an assistant at Haverford College. He spent three years there before moving on to coach at the College of New Jersey. Then a position became available at Bucks.

“When I heard about the coaching position at Bucks I was looking for a new challenge,” Kelly said.

When the basketball season ends, Kelly works full-time as a legal assistant. He holds a bachelor’s degree in geography from Villanova University and a master’s in counseling from the College of New Jersey.

Kelly hopes to coach at a major university someday. He still believes he has much to accomplish at Bucks.

“I love coaching and want to do it full time. Its competitive but you have to work hard,” Kelly said. “I haven’t achieved my goal as a coach yet but I am very committed to it. I love it here at Bucks.”

Coach Kelly has announced a preliminary meeting on October 1 at 4 p.m. in the Gym. For any information on basketball program or tryouts go to the meeting.