Towson AD on new coach: "This guy is world class"
Of the candidates that Towson’s search committee interviewed for the head coaching vacancy, the realization was that the best man for the job was already within the Tigers’ ranks.
In confirming the news that the school had promoted associate head coach and defensive coordinator Shawn Nadelen to head coach, athletic director Mike Waddell said Nadelen’s background and experiences helped him emerge as the school’s choice to succeed Tony Seaman, who parted ways with the university on May 9.
“From the very get-go, Shawn was the standard that we were measuring things up against because when you look at his background as a prep and as a collegian and as a professional and member of our world championship team and the captain of the New York team [the New Jersey Storm of the National Lacrosse League] back in the 2000s, he’s been a leader,” Waddell said Sunday afternoon. “He’s been around the greats when you talk about [former Princeton coach and current Denver coach Bill] Tierney and Seaman and Petro [Johns Hopkins coach Dave Pietramala]. He played for three different coaches at Hopkins. So he definitely knows what it’s like to go through change. This guy is world class and what better leader could we hope for to carry on the tradition that Carl Runk and Tony Seaman established. I think Shawn Nadelen is a great choice.”
Nadelen was a four-year starter between 1998 and 2001 at Johns Hopkins, where he played close defense in his last two years after switching from the midfield. After three years as an assistant coach under Tierney at Princeton, Nadelen joined Towson prior to the 2004 season. Since then, he has been the defensive coordinator and was named the associate head coach prior to the 2010 season.
Waddell said Nadelen’s familiarity with the players was a factor in his hiring.
“I think that’s always a fundamental thing that you look for,” Waddell said. “If you have that at your disposal and you’re trying to make one of these hires, you’d be crazy not to look at that as a tremendous advantage. I think even if he would have been an outside candidate looking in, this is exactly the type of guy I want to be able to have as the leader of our program.”
Waddell has openly expressed his wish to rebuild the Tigers as the Colonial Athletic Association champion and a contender for the NCAA title. Waddell, however, said he won’t impose a timetable on those plans.
“That’s a better question for Coach Nadelen,” Waddell said. “I want to make sure that we’re doing everything administratively to support the coach and the student-athletes. That will be something that Coach Nadelen and I put together. First and foremost, we need to get back to having a winning record to representing ourselves among the teams in the greater Baltimore area to winning our conference. I think if you win your conference, you’re in position to do things nationally and once you’re one of that field of 16, anything can happen on any given day. Denver proved that, our teams proved that in 1991 and 2001. We definitely know it can be done. We just have to get back out and do the little things that make a difference in the close games and that make a difference between winning and losing.”