Paul Biancardi is the ESPN national recruiting director for high school basketball. He is an analyst on ESPNU’s weekly show, ESPN Recruiting Nation, in addition to calling games for the GEICO ESPN High School Showcase series across ESPN networks.
Biancardi first joined ESPN in 2006 as a college and high school basketball analyst. He became ESPN’s national recruiting director in 2008. He is voting member of the McDonald’s All American committee and the Gatorade state and national player of the year.
Prior to joining ESPN, Biancardi was the head coach at Wright State University, where he was named Horizon League Coach of the Year in 2004. He was an assistant coach at St. Louis (2007-08), Ohio State (2003-1997) and Boston College (1997-90). While coaching the Eagles, the team reached the Elite Eight (1994) and the Big East Championship (1997). Hoop Scoop Online named him the No.1 assistant coach in the country in 2002 and he helped the Buckeyes make four NCAA Tournament appearances, including reaching the 1999 Final Four.
Pete Strickland has coached basketball for 31 years, spanning the professional, collegiate and high school ranks and amidst the development intensive high school ranks, Pete would say that he has mentored, tutored and been an extraordinary example to countless student-athletes and their families, their friends and their associates. THIS is the 'evidence' - as Pete calls it - that means the most to him as he reflects on his coaching career, and where he feels he has most indelibly left his mark.
Pete Strickland began his coaching career by coaching DeMatha High School's finest in the summer leagues of Washington, DC when he'd return home from the University of Pittsburgh. He was at Pitt enjoying a stellar four year career there under Head Coach Tim Grgurich - thought to be the Gold Standard, i.e., the absolute BEST teacher of the game in the NBA right now. Pete was a three year captain under Grgurich and left Pitt as their all-time career assist leader.
He also left Pitt as a Speech and Theater Arts major with a 3.3 g.p.a, and was an undergraduate who was nominated for a Rhodes Scholarship. ("Juuuust missed," says Pete jokingly).
Buoyed by his playing experiences, Pete earned an opportunity to play professionally in Ireland. Excited to play, his club, Neptune Basketball Club in Cork, Ireland, soon saw a unique talent and asked Pete to be player-coach. Pete accepted and, at the age of 23, found himself coaching a professional team in the Irish National League whose average age was 28. Pete maintains he learned as much about coaching THAT year as he did in any ensuing year.
Neptune went undefeated in regular season play that year and swept the 4 team Final Four as well. COACH Strickland was off and running.
From there it was a return to America to go to graduate school at New York University (NYU), where he started work towards his Master's in Acting at the Tisch School of the Arts. Soon, though, he wandered over to the gymnasium and asked Mike Muzio, the AD and Head Basketball Coach, if he needed any help. Within weeks, Pete was running practice while Coach Muzio recruited for the year to come.
The next year Pete stayed in New York and coached Mount Saint Michael in the Bronx where he was the JV Head Coach and Varsity assistant to John Miller. There Pete met Mary Catherine Freeman a confident and talented young guidance counselor at the school. Within six weeks of meeting, Pete asked her to marry him. She said "Yes!'" though Pete says the exclamation point may be his. Soon, as she had never done so before, Mary Catherine would see her first live basketball game. Little did she know....
At this point Morgan Wootten, Pete's DeMatha Catholic high school coach, and one of but two high school coaches in the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, and Pete spoke. Morgan said that if you are going to coach, you need to come back to DeMatha.
Pete had been helping Morgan run his legendary summer basketball camp for years - a camp where Pete had learned so well how to TEACH from Mr. Wootten, one of the finest teachers OF ANYTHING ever known - so Pete and Coach Wootten were in constant contact through the year. THIS conversation, however, hit home with Pete, and he headed back to DC, soon to be married to Ms. Freeman, and soon to be coaching DeMatha's JV - where he was the head coach - and assisting on the varsity with Mike Brey, as both Mike and Pete joined forces to help Coach Wootten win a few more championships at DeMatha to go with his gaudy amount already assembled - league, city and national titles among them.
Without a doubt, having been a First Team All-State player for Morgan and returning to coach with him for those three years, Morgan has been and will forever be the biggest influence on Pete's 31 year career as a coach. Morgan is an extraordinary communicator, an ethical and hard-charging leader and competitor, and Pete could not have learned enough from such an accomplished man. A man who Pete says "is what he seems to be."
Three years there at DeMatha learning countless lessons and coaching incredible student-athletes, soon saw Pete take the job as the Head Basketball Coach at Ravenscroft School in Raleigh, NC. Pete spent a year in Raleigh (though he would return!) before the college game and Joe Cantafio, the Head Basketball Coach of Virginia Military Institute (VMI) lured him to Lexington, VA and NCAA Division I basketball.
Coach Cantafio, like Coach Wootten before him, had his priorities straight, modeled the same for Pete and taught him the college game. VMI was a hard sell, for sure, but Joe, Pete and Dave Manzer enjoyed three very good years coaching the Keydets, and Pete took his next step in coaching when he joined Oliver Purnell at Old Dominion University (ODU).
At Old Dominion, Coach Purnell, Pete, 'Tic' Price, Frank Smith and Steve Trax led the Monarchs to the NCAA Tournament in their very first year, where they trailed mighty Kentucky by but 4 with under 4 minutes to play. Two MORE straight years of postseason play earned Oliver a chance to coach the Dayton Flyers of the University of Dayton (UD). Pete, after attempting to get the vacant head coaching job at ODU (a real learning experience), soon thereafter joined Coach Purnell at Dayton for four growing and incredibly impressive years. The team that the staff inherited at UD had won 6 games in the T-W-O years prior to Coach Purnell and staff taking over. Soon, that changed.
With postseason success in the rearview mirror at Dayton, Coach Strickland was sought and signed by Coastal Carolina University (CCU) to be their head coach in April of 1998. A program wracked by scandal and NCAA probation, THAT became a distant memory for Coastal fans, and soon Coach Strickland was named Coach of the Year in the Big South Conference (1999 - 2000), and the program was rolling.
Four Big South Players of the Year were developed by Coach Strickland and his staff in their seven years in Myrtle Beach, along with three Big South Rookies of the Year. In all, despite coping with four Athletic Directors in seven years, Coach Strickland left CCU as their second winningest coach in school history.
Onto NC State it was, where Pete worked for Sidney Lowe and the Wolfpack. There they counted wins over Duke and North Carolina amongst some of their more memorable wins, and a march through THREE consecutive Top 25 teams - Virginia, Virginia Tech, and Duke - in the 2007 ACC Tournament to face another nationally ranked team, UNC, in the final was one of the more memorable runs for Pete and for Wolfpack fans the world over.
Coach Lowe resigned and Pete landed, 24 years later, back in the same Washington, DC area he had departed from when he left DeMatha in 1987 to join George Washington University (GW) in Foggy Bottom. There he assisted as the Colonials rebuilt their program with an incredible freshman class of Joe McDonald, Kevin Larsen, Patricio Garino and Kethan Savage, a class that would lead GW to two postseasons - NCAA and NIT - in their first three years.
BUT, Coach Strickland had always been known as a great recruiter, so the GW signings were not a surprise to anyone.
Throughout his coaching career, Coach Strickland's penchant for building lasting and genuine relationships allowed him to constantly attract quality student-athletes to the successful programs he represented. ALL of these schools that Coach Strickland represented got better for his having been there. Significantly better while he was there and continued improvement even after Coach Strickland left, with those that he left behind.
So, it has been a career of 'lives changed' as much as its been a career of 'games won'.
Ask any of his players. They'd love to be asked.
Richard Morgan brought more than a decade of NCAA coaching experience to the Bluefield College men’s basketball program upon his hire in 2009. Beyond his coaching experience, Morgan was a decorated collegiate player at the University of Virginia and a standout athlete at Salem High School – making his Virginian roots run even deeper.
The Rams posted a 17-16 record during Morgan’s first year at the helm of the program. Bluefield went 11-5 in Appalachian Athletic Conference play to grab a share of the regular season title. Morgan’s guidance helped senior Omar Reed earn AAC Defensive Player of the Year, AAC Player of the Year and NAIA Third Team All-America honors.
In each of his first three seasons, Morgan led the Rams to postseason play, both in the AAC and the National Christian College Athletic Association’s Mid-East Region. The Rams transitioned to the highly competitive Mid-South Conference for the 2012-13 season and concluded the year with eight wins. However, Bluefield dropped five games by five points or less, including a pair of overtime games. In the Rams’ first-ever MSC game, they knocked off No. 3 ranked Georgetown College, 96-89.
2013 also marked the end of BC standout Byron Carpenter’s career. Morgan brought the Virginia Beach, Va., native to Bluefield for a three-year career where the center tallied 1795 points – an average of 20.2 points per game. Carpenter earned second team All-AAC (2011), first team All-AAC (2012), AAC Player of the Year (2012) NAIA second team All-American (2012) and first team All Mid-South Conference (2013) honors during his career.
Morgan joined the Bluefield athletics family after a three-year stint as an assistant coach at Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C. He helped the Mountaineers to a school record 25 wins and a National Invitational Tournament (NIT) appearance in 2007, in addition to back-to-back Southern Conference (SoCon) regular season championships (2006-07, 2007-08).
Before his time with Appalachian State, Morgan served as an associate head coach at Hampton University for three years. Morgan helped the Pirates to consistently strong seasons in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Championships (MEAC), including a MEAC Championship and NCAA Tournament appearance in 2006. This was Morgan’s second stint with Hampton, as he served as an assistant from 1996-98.
Prior to his Hampton return, Morgan spent five seasons (1999-2003) as an assistant at East Carolina University.
Morgan pursued coaching after a successful career as a professional and collegiate player. As a three-year starter at Virginia, Morgan finished his career ranked sixth all-time in scoring with 1,540 points. He also ranked third at UVa in steals (160) and seventh in assists (279). He earned first team All-Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) honors and was named honorable mention All-America by The Sporting News after leading the Cavs to the Elite Eight in 1989. Following his graduation with a sports management degree, Morgan played basketball professionally for two seasons with the Rockford Lightning of the CBA and overseas with teams in Austria and the Philippines.
He began his coaching career at his alma mater, Salem High School, where he helped lead the program to district, regional and state championships. He also served as a paraprofessional for special education programs.
Morgan and his wife, Sherelle, have two sons, Nicholas and Kaleb.
Milton Barnes served as a NBA/College Scout for the Minnesota Timberwolves from 2009 to 2016 and is the current Head Coach of the US Virgin Islands National Team.
Milton Barnes was named associate head men's basketball coach at SMU by head coach Matt Doherty on July 13, 2007. Barnes has championship coaching and administrative experience at every level of basketball over the last 28 years and will serve as the scouting coordinator for SMU basketball.
His coaching experience includes an NBDL title with Greenville (S.C.) in 2002, a Goodwill Games Gold Medal with Team USA in 1998, and a Mid-American Conference Tournament crown as the head coach at Eastern Michigan in 1998. He has also helped several players reach the NBA, including Bobby Jackson and Earl Boykins.
At the professional level, Barnes has spent the last two seasons as a college scout for the Washington Wizards of the NBA. There he scouted 2007 draftees Nick Young and Dominic McGuire.
In 2001-02, Barnes was the head coach and general manager for the NBDL in Greenville, S.C. guiding Greenville to the inaugural NBDL Championship. He had several players move on to the NBA including Ansu Sesay (Seattle Supersonics), Billy Thomas (New Jersey Nets/Washington Wizards), Kimani Ffriend (Miami Heat) and others who played overseas. His NBDL title was book-ended by one-year stints with Harlem Globetrotters, the second as head coach and general manager. He has also been involved with numerous NBA pre-draft camps and was the Commissioner of the World Basketball League in 2003-04, a league of NBA hopefuls that had expired their college eligibility.
At the collegiate level, Barnes went 62-53 in four years at Eastern Michigan (1996-2000). Barnes led the Eagles to the 1998 Mid-American Conference Tournament Title and the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Under his guidance, guard Earl Boykins won the Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award as the nation's best player shorter than 6 feet before going on to play in the NBA. His other collegiate coaching stops included two stints at Minnesota; as an assistant from 1986-88 and as associate head coach from 1991-96 where he recruited and assisted in development of NBA players Willie Burton (Miami Heat), Bobby Jackson (New Orleans), Quincy Lewis (Utah Jazz), John Thomas (New Jersey/Minnesota), Sam Jacobson (LA Lakers) and others. Barnes also served two years at Detroit (1982-83 and 1985-86), two seasons at Eastern Michigan (1983-85), a pair of seasons at Kent State (1980-82), and a season at his alma mater, Albion College (1979-80). He was also the head coach for the Organizer News All-Stars (1980).
Barnes' was an assistant coach for Senegal's National Team in preparation for the 2008 Olympics. He served in a similar role for the Nigerian National Team during the 2006 World Basketball Championships in Japan. Barnes' first international coaching stint was an assistant coach for the 1998 USA Basketball team, which won the Gold Medal at the Goodwill Games in New York.
From 1988-91, Barnes was the athletic director and head basketball coach at Albion High School in Albion, Mich. In 1991, Barnes was named State Coach of the Year as his team finished 26-1 and advanced to the Class B State Championship game. Barnes went 65-11 in three seasons, winning three consecutive district and regional titles. In 2004-05, Barnes ran the athletic and recreational sports programs at Eagle Point School in Buckeye, Ariz.
Barnes was a three-time All-Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association performer at Albion College from 1975-79. In 1978, he helped the school to its first MIAA title since 1957 and eventually finished third in the NCAA Division III Tournament. In 1979, he was named NCAA AllRegion and All-MIAA first team after two selections to the league's second team. Barnes finished with 1,137 points in his career and is 1995 inductee into the Albion College Hall of Fame.
Barnes and his wife Lyn have three children; sons Andre and Milton Jr. and a daughter Alexis. His son Andre ran track and field at Michigan.
Biancardi is a 1985 graduate of Salem State and earned a degree in physical education. He played four years and was voted team captain as a senior. As a senior, he was selected for the “James Twohig Award” for outstanding character, sportsmanship and dedication.
Biancardi is originally from Boston and was inducted into the Athletics Hall of Fame in 1997 at Pope John XXIII High School. He currently resides in Charlotte, N.C.
Our Spring 2017 Camp Tour Directors have a combined 71 years of NCAA D1 coaching experience (14 years as NCAA D1 Head Coaches) & 3 Conference Coach of the Year Awards. Former D1 Head Coach Paul Biancardi is currently ESPN's National Recruiting Director and is a key McDonalds All American Game voter & Naismith NPOY Voter. Former D1 Head Coach Milton Barnes boasts a NBA D-League Championship & is the current coach of the US Virgin Islands National Team. Former D1 Head Coach Pete Strickland heads up the Ireland National Team and has recruiting evaluations appearing on ESPN.COM. Coach Richard Morgan is in his 8th year as the head coach of Bluefield College in addition to serving 11 years at the D1 level.
Visit Events tab above for all Spring 2017 locations and its camp director!