Jesse Agel, well respected as a game tactician and recruiter,
begins his fourth season as head coach of the Bears and has his
team on the verge of challenging for the Ivy League title after
sveral successful recruiting classes. He was a two-year assistant
coach at Brown and a 17-year assistant coach at Vermont, before
being named the head coach at Brown in the summer of 2008.
“Jesse brings a wealth of basketball knowledge and years of experience to the head coaching position at Brown,” said Brown athletic Director Michael Goldberger. “He has demonstrated that he knows what it takes to be successful at this level. Jesse views coaching to be about teaching, and that’s something that Brown is all about and what I look for in all of our head coaches.”
The 47-year-old Agel (pronounced A-gull) assisted coach Craig Robinson at Brown for two years, helping the Bears register a school-record 19 victories in 2007-2008, while gaining a berth in the post-season College Basketball Invitational. The Bears finished second in the Ivy standings with an 11-3 mark, winning 10 of their last 11 regular season games.
“I embrace the opportunity to continue to work with a group of extraordinary young men at such a prestigious university as Brown,” said Agel. “Our goal will remain the same, which is the relentless pursuit of the Ivy League Championship. It’s been an honor to work in an outstanding athletic department that has so many exceptional people and educators. I want to thank all the former coaches I’ve worked with along the way and all the great student-athletes I’m lucky to work with.”
During his 17-year stint at Vermont, Agel was the architect of the Catamount’s recent success on the basketball court. A 1984 graduate of Vermont, Agel was the associate head coach at Vermont for eight years under head coach Tom Brennan.
Agel’s hard work and recruiting efforts were instrumental in helping the Catamounts’ to the finest four-year run in the 105-year history of UVM basketball at the end of his UVM career. In this stretch, Vermont won three consecutive America East titles (2003, 2004, 2005), the school’s first conference championships, and its first-ever regular season title in 2002 and again in 2005.
The crowning achievement in Agel’s coaching career was a 60-57 victory over Big East Champion Syracuse in the first round of the 2005 NCAA Tournament at the DCU Center in Worcester, Mass.
A long-time student of the game, Agel began his coaching career as a volunteer student assistant at Vermont in 1984-85. Prior to returning to his alma mater, he was the head coach at Harwood Union (Vt.) High School in Duxbury for two seasons. He guided the Highlanders to the 1988 Vermont Division II State Championship with a 21-2 record.
Agel’s successful recruiting at the collegiate ranks brought in the core of regulars that helped complete the turnaround of the Vermont program over the last decade, highlighted by four straight 20-win seasons. Since 1993, Vermont has had four players named America East Rookie of the Year, including back-to-back winners in T.J. Sorrentine ’04 and Taylor Coppenrath ’05. Both went on to earn America East Player of the Year honors.
Agel was also the director of the Vermont Basketball Camp and has worked as a regular at many of the top camps in the East.
What They Say About Head Coach Jesse Agel……
“It was no secret that coach (Tom) Brennan had his own M.O, what with his daily morning radio show and all, and that Agel was indeed Vermont’s chief tactician.” – Bob Ryan, Boston Globe, April 2, 2005
“Brennan would be the first to tell you that his long-time assistant coach Jesse Agel does most of the planning and scouting and technical coaching.” John Feinstein, Washington Post, March 17, 2005
“Agel met Van Gundy while a student at Vermont. In his 17 years as an assistant at Vermont, Agel has evolved into the type of coach that Stan and brother, Jeff, epitomize. He is the lead recruiter, runs practice and does most of the in-game strategy.” – Pete Thamel, New York Times, March 18, 2005