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CBA continues Caribbean outreach as Illinois' John Spezia named head coach of Antiguan National Team - Jan 1, 2018


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John Spezia
In the first five seasons of the Central Basketball Association, coaches from the CBA member teams have advanced their careers in different ways after participating in the league. Some have become high school coaches or athletic directors, others have become college assistant coaches or head coaches, and even one became a NBA D-League assistant coach. However, on the verge of the sixth year of the CBA, a feat was accomplished today that is a first for the league: a CBA head coach was named as the head coach for a national team of an international nation, as the Illinois Coal Miners head coach, John Spezia , was named as the new head coach for the Antigua & Barbuda National Team. Spezia, who led the Illinois Coal Miners to a 4-4 record in the team's inaugural year in the CBA in 2017, has over 30 years of coaching experience and is currently a licensed coach with FIBA and USA Basketball. Spezia further boasts an incredible resume featuring a variety of national and international basketball accolades, including some of the following personal achievements:
NJCAA Division-II Championship Coach (1991)
NJCAA Division-II Coach of the Year (1991, 2000)
General Manager and Head Coach for the Derby Storm in the British Basketball League (BBL)
President of the NJCAA Men's Basketball Coaches Association
24 seasons as Athletic Director and Head Coach for Danville Area Community College
Assistant Head Coach at NCAA Division-I Valparaiso University
Assistant Head Coach for USA Basketball Olympic Festival team
Inducted into Illinois Basketball Hall of Fame
Inducted into NJCAA Men's Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame
Inducted into Danville Area Community College Athletic Hall of Fame
In addition to the aforementioned individual accomplishments, Spezia has also improved the talent level of athletes around the world through his year-round Reach-1-Coach-1 basketball development program. Through this global initiative, he has led basketball camps during the last three decades for the Phoenix Suns, Milwaukee Bucks, University of Illinois, Valparaiso University, and within a dozen international countries such as England, Greece, Italy, and Philippines, as well as a number of Caribbean islands including Antigua & Barbuda, along with St. Kitts & Nevis, Trinidad & Tobago, and Turks & Caicos.
Spezia will take over an Antiguan & Barbudan national team that will participate in the 2018 Caribbean Basketball Federation Championships, which will serve as a qualifier for the 2021 FIBA Basketball Tournament. The qualifying Caribbean tournament is set to occur in June and July of next year in Suriname, where Spezia will lead the Antiguan & Barbudan national team against Barbados, Bermuda, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Montserrat, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Grenadines, and the hosts, Suriname. With the CBA expanding into the Caribbean with their partnership with Antigua & Barbuda in sending CBA players to the island nation next month, coupled with this announcement of a CBA coach leading the Antigua & Barbuda national team, the future continues to be bright for the CBA and its affiliates in the Caribbean.
Courtesy of: playcba.com   




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1 | 2
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