By Nick Moore @nickmoore4kent
Medway Park Crusaders’ head coach James Vear has announced he is heading to Canada to coach next season, becoming the fourth British coach this summer who has decided to ply his trade overseas.
Vear will be the new Assistant Coach at Dalhousie University, Canada, working under current GB U20s assistant John Campbell. In leaving the country, he joins GB assistant coach Tim Lewis and Tony Garbelotto who have both announced they will be coaching in Germany next season, and GB women’s assistant coach Damian Jennings who has been appointed the women’s head coach at the University of Calgary.
In his three year stint as Coach, Vear picked up a 40-34 win-loss record, and took the Kent-based side from a mid-table D2 side to a top eight D1 outfit.
Following his announcement Vear told Hoopsfix:
“I heard about the position through Campbell as we had an ex-graduate of Dalhousie this past season – Joseph Schow. We had been in contact over the past few seasons regarding potential import players and he had expressed an interest in me coming over to be an assistant this upcoming season. So we started the ball rolling after Christmas to see if I could obtain a VISA.
“We haven’t had a chance to sit down and discuss specific roles, but he knows I am very ambitious and I’m sure he will push me to become a better coach while I am there.”
Garbelotto quit as Mersey Tigers Coach to take charge of German Pro-A side Heidelberg – the 43-year-old has previously coached in Iceland and leaves the Tigers a year after leading them to the BBL title.
While GB Assistant Coach Lewis, is set to link up with former Scottish Rocks Coach, Thorsten Leibenath, at Beko BBL side, Ratiopharm Ulm, after the 2012 Olympics.
Jennings has been at the helm of women’s basketball powerhouse UWIC since 2005 and involved with the GB programme since its inception, primarily with the U20s who he led to promotion to Division A. He joins GB High Performance Manager Ron Wuotila, who was named University of Calgary’s Director of Athletics and Recreation last year.
Vear, at 31 years old, is one of the youngest of all four coaches – perhaps representing a worrying sentiment that the coaching pathway in the UK simply isn’t working, with coaches choosing the same option as younger players; getting out of the UK as soon as possible.
The number of coaches and players opting to leave the UK is rising at an alarming rate – what does this mean for the future of the British game? Let us know in the comments!
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