THE SPORTING NEWS…Mike DeCourcy talks to Coach Sendek about Charlie Coles.
Back in 1994-95, 31-year old first-time head coach Herb Sendek was in his second year at Miami of Ohio. That Miami squad would go on to beat Arizona in the first round of the NCAA, rack up a 23-7 record including a 16-2 mark in the MAC. The staff had rising stars Sean Miller and Thad Matta. It also had the next coach of Miami of Ohio on that bench, as when Coach Sendek left for NC State after the 1995-96 season, Miami hired who would eventually be the school’s all-time leader in victories and the MAC’s all-leader in conference wins with 218. Charlie Coles was an outstanding basketball coach.
Today, the basketball coaching world lost a great one in Coach Coles, who was a Herb Sendek assistant (seated in photo) in 1994-95 and 1995-96 and one of the 10 former Herb assistants to end up leading Division I teams. Coles was the first to do so, and the fact he sustained the Miami success for so long speaks volumes of his abilities as a coach.
"I have so many fond memories of Charlie both as a friend and a coach, and many of them start with recruiting drives early in the morning with a cup of coffee on winding roads in southern Ohio," says Coach Sendek. "Charlie made you laugh and made you think. He was comfortable and held court with one person or many. But I also want people to remember he was a great coach….a really, really, great coach. Much of what we try to instill today is what Charlie was teaching us two decades ago.
"We lost a great coach and a real great person to be around. He loved the game and poured his life into it. For that reason, all of us who were around Coach Coles are better coaches. "