GRZESK COMPLETES MEN'S BASKETBALL COACHING STAFF
July 10, 2003
First year men's basketball coach Gary Grzesk recently announced the additions to his coaching staff at Lakeland College. Grezesk has put together an excellent group of young, proven coaches that takes over a Muskie squad that finished 19-8 last year and won their second straight Lake Michigan Conference title.
Jeff Nicholas comes to Lakeland after spending two seasons as head boy's basketball coach at Waterford Union High School in Waterford, Wis. His duties will include working with the post players, scouting, recruiting and academic liaison.
Coach Nicholas played at the University of Minnesota-Duluth under now UW-Green Bay assistant basketball coach Dale Race. The team earned an NCAA Division II Tournament appearance in 1997, and Nicholas served as team captain. He earned a bachelor's degree in secondary mathematics education in 1997, and he has 18 credits of post graduate work.
He has worked numerous basketball camps and clinics. His father is the legendary John Nicholas, who coached for a number of years at Eau Claire Memorial, and is in the Wisconsin Basketball Hall of Fame.
"I'm excited to have Jeff on staff here at Lakeland," Grzesk said. "He brings a wealth of knowledge from playing under Coach Race at Minnesota Duluth as well as from his father. Jeff has been a head coach himself, which will pay great dividends for me in my first year."
Aric Carpenter comes to Lakeland from Eau Claire North High School, where he has taught since 1995. He will teach social studies at Sheboygan North High School in addition to his duties at Lakeland.
Aric duties will include working with perimeter players, scouting and community relations.
Coach Carpenter was a started for Wauwatosa East High School's 1989 state championship team, and was a teammate of Coach Grzesk. He has served Eau Claire North as junior varsity and sophomore basketball coach for several seasons, worked as varsity assistant at Eau Claire Memorial and coached an AAU 19-and-under national qualifying team in 2002.
He served in several leadership positions while teaching at Eau Claire North, has done extensive professional development and has earned Who's Who Among American Teachers status in 2000 and 2002.
"I've known Aric for a long time, and he's someone I trust and I respect his knowledge of the game. Aric's greatest strength as a coach is his ability to communicate with young men."
Nigel Jenkins comes to Lakeland after serving one season as men's basketball student assistant at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks.
Jenkins' duties will include on-the-floor coaching, recruiting, scouting and strength and conditioning.
Jenkins played two seasons at North Dakota, after transferring from Black Hawk East College in Illinois. He shot 48 percent from the 3-point line for the Fighting Sioux on 75 attempts, 50 percent his senior season. He was defensive MVP for two seasons at Harper High School in Chicago, and graduated 12th in a class of 255.
"The qualities that Nigel had while a player at North Dakota are the same qualities that will make him a great coach. He is very hard working, has a great understanding of the game and was never given anything easy. Coach Jenkins has a very bright future in coaching, and I feel very fortunate to have him a part of Lakeland Basketball."