When storied Western Carolina University men’s basketball coach Larry Hunter recently announced his retirement after notching his 700th career win, it was clear that a new era would soon begin for the WCU hoops program.
That era began just a few minutes ago, as Western Carolina University Director of Athletics Randy Eaton announced Hunter’s replacement.
Eaton said he wanted someone who wasn’t from a "maintenance" program, but rather from a program that had been built to be successful. Eaton also said he wanted someone with national and regional ties.
“I also wanted someone who understood that ‘student’ comes before ‘athlete,’” Eaton said during a press conference Mar. 27.
After conferring with basketball coaches and officials from around the region and around the country, Eaton said one name kept coming up.
“We didn’t get ‘a’ guy, we got ‘the’ guy,” Eaton said. “We have the man to lead this basketball team.”
The guy is Mark Prosser, son of former Xavier University and Wake Forest head coach Skip Prosser.
Prosser was, until Mar. 27, the associate head coach at Winthrop University, and had also served as head coach at Brevard College for a year.
“I’ve been very fortunate to coach at some very good places with some very good players,” Prosser said.
He’s also aware of the role college athletics play in Cullowhee, mentioning the type of program he intends to shepherd during his tenure.
“We’re going to go about this the right way. Our guys are going to be about the ABCs – academics, basketball, character,” he said. “We’ll get started very quickly in building that championship culture.”
WCU currently competes in the Southern Conference, and during the 2017-18 season notched an 8-10 record, well behind UNC-Greensboro’s 15-3 mark.
To find out more about WCU’s athletics program, including men’s basketball and Coach Prosser, visit www.catamountsports.com.