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Desmond Oliver Head Coach

During a press conference held Monday, April 5, inside Gordon Ball Court, East Tennessee State University Director of Athletics Scott Carter announced the hiring of Desmond Oliver as the new head coach of the ETSU men’s basketball program.

Oliver, who spent the last six seasons as an assistant coach at Tennessee, becomes the 18th head coach in ETSU men’s basketball history. The Buffalo, N.Y. native brings 27 years of Division I coaching experience with him to Johnson City, as he held stints as an assistant at Charlotte (2010-15), Canisius (2009-10), Georgia (2004-09), Rhode Island (2001-04), St. Bonaventure (2000-01), Cornell (1998-2000), Texas A&M (1997-98) and Niagara (1994-97).

“It is an honor to welcome Coach Desmond Oliver as the head coach of ETSU Basketball,” said Carter. “Coach Oliver has a tremendous reputation from the Ivy League to the SEC as a man of the highest integrity and extraordinary work ethic. His wealth of collegiate coaching experience includes multiple championships, postseason appearances, renowned recruiting classes, and development of NBA Draft picks. Those who know him best state that Coach Oliver’s comprehensive basketball knowledge, relationship building, fierce competitiveness, and commitment to young men are what make him so special. As I have gotten to know Coach, I am most excited about the father, husband, and person he is. Our ETSU Basketball program is very fortunate to have Desmond Oliver as its head coach.”

This marks Oliver’s first head coaching job and he’s excited for the opportunity to lead a program with such tradition-rich history.

“ETSU basketball has a history of success that was attractive to me,” said Oliver. “This program has experienced success on the court and has also successfully cultivated strong relationships throughout the community. I’m really excited about this opportunity to build on that and lead us as we take our next steps forward. My staff and I are going to hit the ground running, and begin our pursuit of cementing ETSU as the hardest working and most respected program in the Southern Conference—a program admired nationwide for doing things the right way. You’re going to be proud of the culture within this program.

“No one is going to outwork us as we develop young leaders within our program who will connect with this community and make a positive impact. My family is eager to make Johnson City our home and engage in productive dialogue about uplifting approaches to the unique challenges our young people face.”

During his six seasons in Knoxville, Oliver saw Tennessee compile 123 wins and make three trips to the NCAA Tournament, including a Sweet Sixteen appearance in 2019. In the 2018-19 season, the Vols were ranked as high as No. 1 in the AP Top 25 Poll and finished sixth in the country with an overall record 31-6. Tennessee, who was ranked in the top-10 all season, went a perfect 11-0 in games where Oliver had the scout.

Oliver helped direct Tennessee to the 2018 SEC Championship and a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Vols were one of the best defensive teams in the country as they finished sixth nationally in defensive efficiency and led the SEC in scoring defense (65.7 ppg).

Oliver played a critical role in Tennessee’s recruiting, as the Vols’ 2020 class was ranked No. 4 nationally by ESPN and their 2016-17 freshman class finished as the highest-scoring rookie class in program history with 1,040 points. Oliver coached three players who were selected in the NBA Draft, including back-to-back SEC Player of the Year and first team All-American Grant Williams. Williams was drafted 22nd overall by the Boston Celtics in 2019, while Admiral Schofield (42nd overall by Philadelphia) and Jordan Boone (57th overall by Detroit) were also taken in the 2019 Draft.

In his five-year stint at Charlotte, the 49ers defeated three top-15 opponents – No. 7 Tennessee (49-48, 2010-11), No. 11 Butler (71-67, 2012-13), and No. 14 Michigan (63-61), when they claimed the 2013 Puerto Rico Tip-Off. A year prior, Charlotte won the 2012 Great Alaska Shootout, while finishing the 2012-13 season with 21 wins and a trip to the NIT. The 21 wins marked the most by a Charlotte 49er team since posting 22 in 2000-01. Oliver was also essential in having the 49ers post back-to-back non-BCS top-10 recruiting classes.

Prior to his one season at Canisius (2009-10), where the Golden Griffins had their highest win total over a nine-year span, Oliver had his first run as an assistant in the SEC at the University of Georgia. Oliver led the Bulldogs to a pair of postseason berths – a 2007 NIT appearance and a trip to the 2008 NCAA Tournament. Georgia completed a historic run to win the 2008 SEC Tournament as they had to win two games on Saturday – the quarterfinal game versus Kentucky followed by the semifinal win over Mississippi State. Georgia then defeated Arkansas in the championship, marking the Bulldogs’ first SEC Tournament title since 1983. While at Georgia, Oliver recruited Travis Leslie and Howard Thompkins, who both ended up being NBA Draft picks.

Over a four-year stretch, Oliver spent time on Jim Baron’s staff – one season at St. Bonaventure, and then three years at Rhode Island. At Rhode Island, Oliver helped guide the Rams to a 13-win improvement from 2001-02 to 2002-03. The Rams finished with 21 wins in 2002-03, and again, posted another 20-win campaign in his third and final season en route to making their second straight NIT appearance.

The Buffalo native began his collegiate coaching career in New York where he joined Jack Armstrong’s staff at Niagara. Oliver helped recruit Alvin Young to the Purple Eagles, and Young went on to lead all NCAA Division I players in scoring in 1999 (25.1 ppg) and receive MAAC Player of the Year honors.

Following his three years at Niagara, Oliver then coached one season at Texas A&M and two seasons at Cornell.

In 1992, Oliver graduated from Dominican College in Orangeburg, N.Y., where he was a three-year starter on the basketball team and a two-year team captain. He earned a Master’s degree in student personnel administration at Buffalo State. As Oliver was working on his Master’s, he started his coaching career as a varsity assistant and head junior varsity coach at Turner-Carroll High School.

Following an outstanding prep career at DeSales High School in Lockport, New York, Oliver played one year at Genesee Community College in Batavia, New York under coach Bill Van Gundy (father of NBA head coaches Jeff and Stan).

Oliver is joined in Johnson City by his wife, the former Annette Applewaithe. The couple has two sons – Dante and Dallas

Mark Bialkoski Assistant Coach

Mark Bailkoski joined Coach Oliver's staff on April 19, 2021.

  Coach Bailkoski comes to ETSU after spending the last six seasons at Maryland, the last three as the Terrapins’ Director of Basketball Operations. Prior to being elevated in 2018, Bailkoski was the team’s video coordinator from 2015-18.

“Mark is an relentless competitor that does an exceptional job building strong relationships with student-athletes,” said Oliver. “He has a tremendous passion for teaching the game and will be a valuable asset to our program here at ETSU.”

Coach Bailkoski is ready for this next step in his career as he joins Coach Oliver’s staff.

“My family and I are thrilled to be coming to Johnson City,” said Bailkoski. “We are extremely grateful to Coach Oliver for the opportunity. Coach’s family values, his leadership, and vision for the program are all qualities we value most. We are excited to be a Buccaneer family and are committed to serving the student-athletes here at ETSU.”

During his six-year tenure at Maryland, Bailkoski saw the Terrapins generate a 134-63 record (.680), while making four NCAA Tournament appearances (five if including the 2019-20 season). Maryland won the 2020 Big Ten Championship and was ranked 12th in the final AP Top 25 Poll. In Bailkoski’s first season in College Park, Maryland reached the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2003 and finished No. 12 nationally after winning 27 games – the fourth-most in program history.

Prior to his run at Maryland, Bailkoski spent six seasons (2009-15) with the Charlotte 49er men’s basketball program, five of which were with Coach Oliver. Bailkoski was the program’s Director of Basketball operations from 2012-15 and he started as a program assistant/graduate manager from 2009-12.

In his three seasons on the staff, the 49ers captured the Great Alaska Shootout and Puerto Rico Tip-Off titles and reached the Charleston Classic championship game. The 49ers defeated No. 10 Butler on the road as well in 2013. The 49ers won 52 games, including a 21-win season in 2013, marking the program’s first 20 wins season since 2007-08. With another winning season in 2014, the 49ers posted back-to-back winning seasons for the first time since 2007. Charlotte made its first postseason tournament appearance since 2008 with an NIT appearance in 2013.

During the 2012-13 season, Bialkoski played a major role in helping set up the first annual Military Appreciation game (the Georgia Southern game) where the 49ers were able to raise over $600 for military personnel.

As Director of Operations, Bialkoski helped with team travel, budgeting, scheduling and academic support as well as helping run the Alan Major Basketball Camps. In the fall of 2013, the Niners men’s basketball team achieved its highest semester grade point average in program history.

While as a program assistant and graduate manager at Charlotte, Bialkoski did advance opponents scouting, assisted in scheduling, and managed all video related tasks for the coaching staff in addition to designing and developing the first Charlotte 49ers men’s basketball newsletter. Bialkoski facilitated all pre- and post-game practice set-up, created recruiting mail-outs and was a key resource to all basketball operational functions.

Bailkoski has ties to the Southern Conference as he received a Bachelor’s of Science with a major in Exercise Science from Georgia Southern in 2008. During his time with the Eagles, Bailkoski was the head manager of the men’s basketball program under head coach Jeff Price where Georgia Southern won the 2006 SoCon Championship.

Patrice Days Assistant Coach

Patrice Days was named to Coach Oliver's staff on April 19, 2021.

  Days has 12 years coaching experience, including the last eight at the NCAA Division I level. He comes to Johnson City after spending the last four seasons as an assistant coach under Cliff Ellis at Coastal Carolina.

“Patrice is one of the brightest up-and-coming coaches in the business, and has gained experience working for some of the most well-respected coaches in the country,” said Oliver. “He possesses a contagious personality that will fit well with our staff and players.”

Days is excited to reunite with Coach Oliver and be part of a tradition-rich program.

“I’m very excited to be a Buccaneer,” said Days. “This place has tradition and a winning spirit when you touch campus – it’s definitely a blessing. Words can’t decide how happy I am to get to work for Coach Oliver again. He’s been a mentor of mine for years and someone I admire and believe in. I’m ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work!”

In his four years in Conway, S.C., Days helped lead the Chanticleers to a pair of postseason berths, including a trip to the 2021 CBI Championship game after finishing with an 18-8 record. This year, Days saw DeVante’ Jones, a 1,000-point scorer, earn Sun Belt Player of the Year honors, as well as being named a finalist for the Lou Henson Player of the Year award.

During his four-year stint with CCU, Days saw the Chanticleers become one of the top rebounding and defensive teams in the country.

In his first season (2017-18), CCU ranked 16th nationally in field goal percentage defense (40.5), 25th in rebound margin (5.8), 29th in rebounds per game (38.8) and 40th in offensive rebounds per game (12.1). The trend continued under Days’ watch as the Chanticleers ranked sixth in the country in multiple rebounding categories following the 2019-20 campaign, in which CCU also defeated Utah in the Myrtle Beach Invitational. As a team, CCU ranked sixth in total rebounds (1,329), eighth in offensive rebounds per game (13.4), 12th rebounds per game (40.3), 26th rebound margin (6.1) and 43rd in total steals (248).

This past season, the Chanticleers ranked second in rebounds per game (43.5), third in rebound margin (9.9), fourth in defensive rebounds per game (29.9), sixth in offensive rebounds per game (13.5), seventh in field goal percentage defense (39.0), 17th in total rebounds (1130) and 28th in steals per game (8.2).

Prior to arriving at Coastal Carolina, Days spent one season each at Southern Utah (2016-17) and Wright State (2015-16). At Wright State, Days played an integral role in several aspects of the program, including player development, daily practice routines, scouting, and recruiting. He was also an academic coach for the student-athletes.

Days got his first Division I assistant coaching job at Abilene Christian where he spent the two seasons as the Wildcats’ recruiting coordinator from 2013-15.

In 2012-13, Days was an assistant coach at Arlington Country Day School in Jacksonville, Florida, under legendary prep coach Rex Morgan. Days coached Country Day – one of the top prep schools in the country – to an overall record of 30-4.

Prior to his time at Country Day, Days spent the 2011-12 season as an assistant coach at Vermont Academy and before that (2010-11) he was the director of player development at Charlotte – where Coach Oliver was an assistant – and before that (2009-10) he was a graduate assistant at his alma mater, New Orleans.

As a player, Days played at Piney Woods High School in Piney Woods, Mississippi, where he averaged nine points and six rebounds per game as a senior in 2001-02. He spent a year at Southern (LA) University before an injury forced him to miss the rest of the season. He went on to play one season (2006-07) at Caldwell (NC) Community College before returning to Louisiana. He graduated from New Orleans in 2010 with a degree in interdisciplinary studies with a double minor in business and education.

Vince Martin Assistant Coach


East Tennessee State University men’s basketball head coach Desmond Oliver announced on Wednesday, April 6, that Vince Martin has joined his staff as an assistant coach.

Martin comes to ETSU after spending the last three seasons at Jacksonville University. This past season at Jacksonville, the Dolphins posted 21 victories, matching the most wins since 1985-86 and were the most since Jacksonville won 22 games in 1970-71. In addition, Jacksonville went a perfect 15-0 at home, becoming just one of 15 Division I programs to go undefeated at home this season. Martin worked with the guards and forwards, and developed multiple players who have earned all-league honors, including Kevion Nolan, Dontarius James, and Destin Barnes at Jacksonville.

Prior to his stint at Jacksonville, Martin was the head coach at Bishop Snyder High School in Florida for three years. During his time at Bishop Snyder, Martin developed some of the top talent in the state of Florida including former 5 star and University of Tennessee signee Corey Walker Jr. Martin also worked with the Atlanta based, Game Elite AAU program where he coached multiple top prospects in the nation including former 4-star Walker Kessler and 4-star Ernest Ross.

Martin, a native of Marietta, Ga, earned a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Young Harris College and a Master’s of Business Administration degree from Jacksonville University. Martin played one season at Arkansas-Pine Bluff, before transferring to Young Harris for two seasons and ended his career playing one season at Jacksonville. During his time at Young Harris, Martin averaged 16.9 points and 7.3 assists per game, while knocking down 99 threes in 52 career games played. In his one season at Jacksonville, Martin totaled 297 points, 141 assists, 117 rebounds and 55 steals, while starting all 30 games for the Dolphins. Martin was named to the 2014 ASUN Academic Honor Roll.

Lucas Campbell Director of Operations

Lucas Campbell was named Director of Operations on April 19, 2021.

  Lucas Campbell, a four-year member of the Tennessee men’s basketball team, spent the last two seasons a graduate manager with the Vols.

“I’ve worked with Lucas for the last six years. Over that time he’s shown me that he’s one of those blue collar and hardworking guys,” said Oliver. “He knows what I want to do here at ETSU and he knows the standard I intend to set.”

Campbell is ready to bring championships back to ETSU and be a part of Coach Oliver’s staff.

“I’m excited to be a Buccaneer,” said Campbell. “I’m an East Tennessee native, so this opportunity is perfect. As a staff we’re ready to get to work and get ETSU back to winning championships.”

As a player, Campbell saw minutes in 16 games, while being a member of the 2018 SEC Championship team that went 26-9 overall and 13-5 in conference play en route to finishing 13th in the final AP Poll. Campbell played on back-to-back NCAA Tournament teams, including the 2018-19 squad that went 31-6 and advanced to the Sweet 16.

During his time as a graduate assistant, Campbell assisted in film and scout breakdown. Campbell has also played and worked with multiple NBA Draft picks and prospects during his time at Tennessee.

The Knoxville native graduated with a degree in Supply Chain Management and a collateral in Marketing in 2019. Campbell is set to graduate with a Master’s in Sport Management from Tennessee in May.

Sunny Park Director of Basketball Sport Performance

Sunny Park joins Coach Desmond Oliver's staff at East Tennessee State University after having previously served as the Assistant Athletic Director for Sports Performance at the University of Evansville since 2015. He was responsible for the design and implementation of the strength and conditioning program for men's basketball, in addition to having direct oversight of all other sport teams at various times throughout his tenure.

  “Sunny Park has a proven track record of successful basketball strength and conditioning experience, having previously worked at the collegiate, professional, and international level,” said Oliver. “He is a forward-thinking, progressive coach that relentlessly strives in the pursuit of the development of bigger, faster, and stronger athletes. His drive to continually learn and apply all things related to sport performance will enable our student-athletes to be placed in the best possible position to succeed. His passion and ability to connect with and motivate athletes will allow for the values and standards of our program’s culture to be implemented to the highest level.”

“I am incredibly honored and excited to work with Coach Oliver, the coaching staff, and the men’s basketball team at East Tennessee State University,” said Park. “Coach’s vision for the development of the student-athletes both on the court and off the court, and the role that the strength and conditioning coach will have in all aspects of the program is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I can’t wait to make the move to Johnson City and get to work!”

From 2012-2013, Park was the Athletic Performance Intern for the San Antonio Spurs. During that time he also oversaw the design and implementation of the athletic performance program for the Austin Toros of the NBA D-League (now G League) and served as the Head Athletic Performance Coach for the Spurs 2013 Summer League team. Prior to that, he was a Graduate Strength and Conditioning Intern at the University of Texas where he assisted with men’s and women’s basketball from 2010-2012.

Park has also spent time as an Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach for Canada Basketball’s Senior Men’s National Team (2012, 2013) and as the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach for varsity boy’s basketball at William Lyon Mackenzie Collegiate Institute (2014).

Park graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Kinesiology and Health Science from York University (Toronto, Canada) in 2008 and a Masters of Education in Exercise Physiology (Sports Science and Nutrition) from the University of Texas in 2011. He is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist through the National Strength and Conditioning Association and a USA Weightlifting Level 1 Coach.

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