After serving one year as the Director of Basketball Operations
for Golden Eagle basketball in 2005-06, Russ Willemsen begins his
seventh season as assistant coach for the Golden Eagles and eighth
overall on staff.
Willemsen, 31, came to Tech after serving as an assistant coach at Lee University.
He handles a wide variety of duties on coach Steve Payne's staff, including on-floor coaching and off-campus recruiting. He is also heavily involved in the academic progress of the Golden Eagles and is involved with the players on a day-to-day basis.
Enthusiastic and knowledgeable, Willemsen handled team travel, film exchange and daily office administration during his year as Director of Basketball Operations. He also worked with the summer camps.
A native of Rushville, N.Y., Willemsen played basketball and football at Marcus Whitman High School before enrolling at Lee University in 1999. He served as team manager for three years for coach Rick Hughes’ team, then moved up to a student assistant coaching position in his junior year.
In 2004, Willemsen earned his bachelor’s degree from Lee in physical education and history, with minors in religion and coaching.
He was named an assistant coach for the Flames for the 2004-05 season, where his duties included on-floor coaching and individual workouts, recruiting, scouting, as well as handling the summer camps and overseeing the team’s community service efforts.
At Lee, he was part of teams that reached the NAIA Sweet 16 and Elite Eight, and he worked with five NAIA All-Americans during his six years on the staff.
In his spare time, Willemsen shares his enthusiasm and knowledge
of the game of basketball as well as his experiences as a Golden
Eagle assistant coach on collegiate basketball blogs and websites
including College Chalk Talk and Basketball HQ (http://www.basketballhq.com/).
Willemsen completed his graduate degree in leadership and received his Master’s degree in May 2007. He was married to the former Sarah Dolle on May 8, 2010.