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In a program long defined by achievement, Tom Moore in his seven seasons at the helm of the Quinnipiac University men’s basketball program has placed his own imprint of success on Bobcat basketball. Under his dynamic stewardship, which includes four national postseason appearances and several individual accolades, Quinnipiac has established its place on a national stage.
Under Moore’s tutelage, the Bobcats made three straight national postseason appearances (NIT, CIT, and CBI) from 2009 to 2011, and then tacked on a fourth one in the last five years with a second bid to the CIT in 2014. He was named the CollegeInsider.com Northeast Conference Coach of the Year in 2009, Jim Phelan Northeast Conference Coach of the Year in 2010, and selected to the New England Basketball Hall of Fame’s Class of 2013.
Moore has guided the Bobcats to an average of 20 wins over the last five seasons, including three campaigns with at least 20 wins (2009-10, 2010-11 and 2013-14). He has amassed an overall record of 128-93 (.579), eclipsing the 100-win plateau in his sixth season against instate rival CCSU on January 24, 2013. Moore reached the milestone faster than any QU Division I men's basketball coach and became the second fastest in program history. At the conclusion of his most recent campaign, he contains the fifth highest winning percentage among active New England Division I coaches (multiple seasons).
Moore led Quinnipiac to an unprecedented 23 victories in 2009-10; guiding the Bobcats to the programs first-ever NEC Regular-Season Championship and national postseason tournament berth (NIT). Justin Rutty was named the program’s first-ever NEC Player of the Year. Rutty and James Feldeine were also named to the all-league first team.
A year later, Moore led the Bobcats to a 22-10 record and a home game in the CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament. Rutty was named to the All-NEC First Team for the third straight year, while James Johnson joined him among the league’s top five players, giving Moore back-to-back years with a pair of All-NEC First Team members.
In the 2011-12 season, Moore channeled the Bobcats to an 18-14 record and a trip to the CBI Invitational Postseason Tournament. James Johnson and Ike Azotam were selected to the All-NEC Second Team, while Ousmane Drame was named to the All-NEC Rookie Team. Drame became Quinnipiac’s Rookie leader in rebounds and blocked shots in his inaugural season.
In its final season as a member of the Northeast Conference in 2012-13, Quinnipiac made its eighth straight appearance into the NEC Tournament. Quinnipiac earned 10 or more regular season wins in all six seasons – a distinction that not one other NEC team shared with the Bobcats. He was 70-38 during his stint with the NEC which ranked him eighth all-time in winning percentage among coaches with multiple seasons at an NEC institution. Azotam was named all-league for the second straight year, making the Bobcats one of three schools to place a player on the all-conference team in each of those seasons.
Moore and the Bobcats opened a new chapter in 2013-14, playing their first season in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC). Quinnipiac encountered new opponents, new travel locations, new arenas and new opposing coaches, but nonetheless had the same success. QU posted a 20-12 record, its third 20-win season in the last five years, and notched a 14-6 mark in MAAC play. Quinnipiac garnered third place in the league standings and advanced to the MAAC Tournament Semifinals – its fifth conference semifinals appearance in the last six years. The 20-win season was rewarded with an at-large bid into the CIT Tournament.
Three student-athletes – Ike Azotam, Ousmane Drame and Zaid Hearst – each collected All-MAAC laurels at seasons end. Azotam was bombarded with accolades including being named to the USBWA All-District Team – the first in program history. Azotam closed out his career with 1,043 rebounds and 1,605 points, joining Rutty as the second 1,000-point, 1,000-rebound player since 2011. Drame also set the Division I record for most blocks in a season, and is on pace to become the third player under Moore to reach 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds.
A large part of the Bobcats’ success over the past five years has been their prowess on the glass. Quinnipiac has established itself as a national power in rebounding, evidenced by its consistency in the major rebounding categories. In 2013-14, Quinnipiac led the nation in rebounding, offensive and defensive rebounding and rebounding margin – something it has never done before. Quinnipiac has led the nation in offensive rebounding in each of the last four years, while finishing first or second in total rebounding and rebounding margin in the last three years. This tops typical rebounding powerhouses such as North Carolina, Michigan State, Kentucky and UConn.
Along with team recognition on the glass, come individual accomplishments as well. Rutty, the NEC’s All-Time Career Rebounding Leader finished second in the nation in offensive rebounds per game (4.9) in back-to-back seasons in 2008-09 and 2009-10. Azotam surpassed Rutty’s QU Division I Rebounding record (1,043) and finished fifth in the nation in offensive rebounding and double-doubles last season. Drame ranked ninth nationally in total rebounding and 11th in offensive rebounding. Azotam and Drame became the first Bobcat duo to finish first and second in the league in rebounding.
Tom Moore Coaching Records at Quinnipiac
Off the court and into the classroom, Moore led the greatest turnaround of any team in NCAA Division I during his first three years as head coach. According to a study prepared by FoxSports.com’s Jason Belzer, the Bobcats increased their Academic Progress Rate (APR), as compiled by the NCAA, by 219 points, more than any other program in the nation in that time.
Over the last seven years, Quinnipiac has boasted tremendous success academically among teams in the NEC and the MAAC as well. At the end of the 2010-11 school year, the Bobcats accumulated the highest team GPA in the league, and recently earned the NABC Team Excellence Award with a 3.2 collective team GPA for the 2013-14 season.
In 2008-09, Moore was named the CollegeInsider.com Northeast Conference Coach of the Year after guiding Quinnipiac to a fifth-place finish in the NEC standings despite a slew of injuries throughout the campaign. Quinnipiac upset No. 4 Long Island in the NEC Tournament on the Blackbirds’ home court before losing to eventual NEC Tournament Champion Robert Morris.
Moore also guided three players to All-NEC accolades in 2008-09. James Feldeine and Justin Rutty became the first Quinnipiac duo to lead the conference in scoring and rebounding, respectively. Rutty received First Team recognition, while Feldeine was named to the Second Team and receiving the first Northeast Conference Most Improved Player Award in the league’s history. James Johnson was also named to the All-NEC Rookie Team. Landing Rutty on the first team and Johnson on the all-rookie team marked the second consecutive year that Moore had a player on each team.
The Bobcats finished the 2007-08 season at 15-15 overall as Moore guided Quinnipiac to its first non-losing season since 2002-03. Its 11-7 mark in Northeast Conference play helped the Bobcats to a tie for fourth place in the conference standings. DeMario Anderson was named First-Team All-NEC, while Evann Baker earned All-Rookie Team recognition.
In addition to on-court honors, Moore has been consistently recognized by several members of the media for his coaching expertise. Twice now, once in 2011-12 at the Connecticut 6 Classic and once in March of 2009, he was an in-studio guest on WFAN’s “Mike’d Up” with host Mike Francesa. He was also a regular guest on ESPN Radio 1410/1300 (Hartford/New Haven), appearing on The Back Page with Jason Page every Wednesday afternoon during the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons. He has also been a timely guest on WICC-600’s “College Hoops Talk” with Terry O’Connor over the past seven seasons as well.
A new chapter in the history of the Quinnipiac University men’s basketball program commenced on March 29, 2007, when Moore was introduced as the sixth head coach in the 62-year history of the team. Moore brought two decades of collegiate coaching experience to Quinnipiac and took over as the Bobcats coach after spending the previous 13 years as a member of the coaching staff at the University of Connecticut.
During his time in Storrs, Conn., Moore helped build UConn into a national powerhouse and played a major role in guiding the Huskies to the 1999 and 2004 NCAA Division I Men’s National Championships. Moore received accolades from several prominent sportscasters, such as Dick Vitale, Sean McDonough and Len Elmore, recognizing him as a top head coaching prospect for several years. Moore had also been mentioned by such national outlets as ESPN, Sports Illustrated and Fox Sports as a candidate for a wide range of coaching positions over his final several seasons at UConn.
Under Hall of Fame head coach Jim Calhoun, Moore also helped lead perennially nationally ranked UConn to a 340-99 overall record in 13 seasons, as well as eight Big East regular-season titles, five Big East tournament crowns, and 12 straight national postseason tournament bids (1995-2006).
In his first seven years at UConn, his duties centered on the development of game strategy, practice planning and the organization of the Jim Calhoun Basketball Camp. In April 2001, Calhoun promoted Moore and his responsibilities then shifted more towards recruiting over the next three seasons. On October 10, 2005, Moore was named UConn’s associate head coach, a title he carried for his last two seasons in Storrs.
Recognized as one of the top recruiters and evaluators of talent in the country, Moore either recruited or coached numerous current/former NBA players including Ray Allen, Richard Hamilton, Emeka Okafor, Ben Gordon, Rudy Gay, Caron Butler, Charlie Villanueva, Marcus Williams, Jake Voskuhl, Kevin Ollie, Hilton Armstrong, Josh Boone, Hasheem Thabeet, Jerome Dyson, Jeff Adrian and AJ Price. The Huskies rank fifth among most active NBA players (14) of any Division I program in the country. UConn’s 2004 recruiting class, which included Villanueva, Williams and Boone, was the consensus #1 recruiting class by every major recruiting publication.
Prior to joining the staff at UConn, Moore served as the head coach at Worcester State College for five seasons (1989-94). At the time of his appointment, he became the youngest (24 years old) head coach of a collegiate program in New England. In his five years at the helm of the Lancers, Moore compiled a record of 76-59, which served, at the time, as the winningest five-year period in the school’s history. His 1992-93 club, after posting a record of 19-8, was named the region’s Most Improved Team by the New England Basketball Coaches Association and earned an ECAC Tournament berth. A year later, the 1993-94 team earned a spot in the NCAA Division III National Tournament by defeating Salem State in the MASCAC Tournament Championship Game. The tournament berth marked the first time Worcester State reached the NCAA Tournament in nearly 20 years. At Worcester State, Moore directed a high-scoring, fast-paced style of play, annually ranking WSC among the NCAA Division III leaders in scoring.
Moore also gained coaching experience as an assistant at Division II Assumption College (1988-89) and Worcester State (1987-88). During nearly two decades as either an assistant or head coach at the NCAA Division I collegiate level, Moore has assembled a career mark of 468-193 (.708). Moore began his collegiate coaching career at the age of 22 at Worcester State College under Paul Baker. His responsibilities in his first year were all encompassing including scouting, recruiting and practice planning. After one season there, he moved across town to Division II Assumption College where he worked for head coach Jack Renkens. There he was the New England Prep School recruiting coordinator and worked with the backcourt players in Renkens up-tempo, fast-paced style of play.
A 1987 graduate of Boston University, Moore was selected to his post at Quinnipiac following an exhaustive nationwide search coordinated by DHR International, a leading, privately held provider of executive search solutions with more than 40 wholly-owned offices spanning the globe. Glenn Sugiyama, DHR executive vice president and global sector leader of sports; and Pat Richter, executive vice president, education and sports practice; oversaw the process in conjunction with Val Belmonte, Quinnipiac University vice president for athletic marketing and external relations, and Jack McDonald, director of athletics at Quinnipiac.
Moore currently resides in Tolland, Conn. with his wife, Eileen, and three daughters, Elizabeth Rose, Catherine Grace, and Caroline Mary.