NIAGARA UNIV., N.Y. (Niagara University Press Release) - Niagara University Director of Athletics Ed McLaughlin announced that men's basketball head coach Joe Mihalich has reached an agreement for a contract extension on Tuesday.
Terms of the renegotiated contract were not disclosed, McLaughlin said.
“Our investment in the men’s basketball program is centered around our investment in coach Mihalich," Mihalich said. "He is an ambassador for the university, a mentor for all of our student-athletes and an elite-level head coach. What he did last year and has been able to do with our program throughout his career is amazing and we want it to continue for a long time."
Last season, Mihalich's 11th on the bench, was one of the most successful campaigns in Niagara history. The Purple Eagles won 26 games, the most victories since the 1921-22 season. Mihalich guided the team to the MAAC Championship for the fifth time in eight years, reaching the 200th win plateau along the way. Niagara also participated in a postseason tournament for the fourth time in the last six years, hosting an NIT game in the Gallagher Center for the first time in program history.
“I am so thankful for all that Niagara University has done and is doing for me and my family," Mihalich said. "I have said many times that I am living the dream. To be doing what you love at a place that you love is truly that; living the dream! I am a privileged guy and I am very appreciative.”
“Joe Mihalich has become a very important part of the life of Niagara University," Niagara University Fr. Joseph L. Levesque, C.M.. "We are proud and thankful to have him as our men’s basketball coach, and he is a true mentor as well as a coach. Our athletes do well in their studies, they graduate with their degree and they go on to live very productive lives…all that, and a successful basketball team as well. Congratulations, Coach Joe!”
The two-time MAAC Coach of the Year has coached the Purple Eagles to a pair of NCAA Tournaments, two NIT berths and won two MAAC titles and three MAAC regular season crowns. He has coached three MAAC Players of the Year, 29 All-MAAC performers, including 10 First-Team All-MAAC honorees, and two MAAC Tournament MVPs. Mihalich's 205 victories rank second all-time at Niagara, and he is one of just six active coaches with 200 wins and a .600 winning percentage while coaching just one school. Jim Boeheim (Syracuse), Tom Izzo (Michigan State), Phil Martelli (St. Joseph's), Mark Few (Gonzaga) and Rick Stansbury (Mississippi State) are the others in this select group.