Mike Dunlap is now the head coach of the Charlotte Bobcats. Last year, Dunlap was a highly thought of interim head coach for the St. John’s Red Storm. With his departure, and a returning Steve Lavin, the Red Storm were looking to fill the assistant coach void with someone with as much talent as Dunlap. Well, almost 2 months later, the Johnnies have finally found their man in Darrick Martin.
Martin is a former UCLA Bruinpoint guard who played under Lavin until he graduated in 1992. An un-drafted free agent coming out of UCLA, Martin spent most of his career as a reserve point guard in the NBA, making a small niche for himself and holding on in the league until 2008.
Despite never being a huge player in the NBA, Martin made enough of an impact to get immediate looks as a coach. After his last gig as a reserve for the Toronto Raptors, Martin stayed with the team as an informal assistant coach/consultant. In November of 2009 Martin took the same job for the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Now let us not get to excited Red Storm fans, Martin isn’t nearly as experienced or praised as Dunlap. But with a personal relationship with a returning Lavin, Martin must bring something to the table as nobody expected Lavin to just settle on an assistant coach.
So while Darrick Martin might not be a house name, and the likes of Gene Keady already on the sidelines, it could have been much worse for the Red Storm faithful…Lavin was mulling over hiring a high school coach with no ties to Jesus Shuttlesworth.