Regarded as one of the nation's top recruiters, Barry Rohrssen begins the first season of his second stint as an assistant basketball coach at the University of Pittsburgh. Along with head coach Jamie Dixon, Rohrssen first came to Pitt in 1999.
A former Pitt assistant for seven years from 1999-2006, Rohrssen played a vital role in Pitt's dramatic rise to prominence. During a five-year period, he helped guide Pitt to a 133-33 overall record (.801 winning percentage), a 59-21 Big East regular season record (.738 winning percentage), four Big East Championships (three regular season), three NCAA Sweet Sixteen berths and five consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. In addition, Pitt won its first-ever Big East Tournament title in 2003. At Pitt, he served in three different capacities including the associate head coach under Dixon from 2004-06, assistant coach (2001-04) and director of operations (1999-2001). As a recruiter, he helped the Panthers establish a pipeline from New York City to Pittsburgh.
"We are extremely excited to bring Barry back to Pitt," Dixon said. "From the start, Barry played an integral role in the success and building of our program. He has a great coaching background, is a good recruiter and has an exceptional understanding of how we operate our program."
Rohrssen has over 18 years of major college coaching experience. He became the 22nd head coach at Manhattan College on April 25, 2006, a position he held for five seasons from 2006-11. His best season came in 2008-09 when he guided the Jaspers to a 16-14 overall record and fourth-place finish in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference with a 9-9 league slate. Many of the players he recruited earned a postseason berth and won 21 games in 2011-12. Rohrssen improved academic progress ratings at Manhattan as he graduated every player that stayed for four years and dramatically improved the school's basketball APR scores.
Rohrssen worked the 2012-13 season in the Portland Trailblazers organization as an assistant with the NBADL's Idaho Stampede.
"It's extremely exciting to be returning to Pitt," Rohrssen said. "We obviously want to continue and build upon the great tradition that has been established. The program's success speaks for itself. It's been an honor and I'm proud of my association with the University of Pittsburgh. I love the city of Pittsburgh and feel that it's home. It's a great place to be."
Prior to his first stint at Pitt, Rohrssen served as the school's director of operations at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas from 1995-99 under head coach Bill Bayno. While at UNLV, the program experienced a resurgence as the Runnin' Rebels captured the 1998 Western Athletic Conference Tournament championship and advanced to postseason play in three of his four years. Rohrssen's duties included serving as a liaison to the athletic administration and other school officials, coordination of student-athletes' game, practice and daily schedules as well as serving as UNLV's director of summer basketball camps.
He also worked as an assistant coach at his alma mater, St. Francis, N.Y. from 1993-95. He was responsible for organizing the film exchange program to scout upcoming opponents, overseeing the strength and conditioning program and monitoring the student-athletes' academic performance. The Brooklyn, N.Y. native played for the Terriers from 1981-83 and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in business management in 1983.
Rohrssen also has extensive international coaching experience. In both 1991 and 1992, Rohrssen represented the United States at the World International Championships in both Poland and England, respectively. He also co-coached an American All-Star team in 1998 that finished 5-0 in Tahiti. In 2000, he also served as an assistant coach with a USA Junior Team that competed at an international tournament in Leon, Spain. The squad included former Pitt players Julius Page and Mark McCarroll. Later that summer, Rohrssen helped lead a New York City squad that included McCarroll and former Panther Ricardo Greer to a gold medal title at the 2000 Empire State Games.
Rohrssen has supported a variety of charitable efforts, including the V Foundation for cancer research. During the summer of 2008, he traveled to Iraq and Kuwait with a select group of NCAA basketball coaches to visit American troops as part of a goodwill program "Operation Hardwood V," sponsored by the USO and Armed Forces Entertainment. In 2009, was asked to take part in "Operation Hoop Talk" in Afghanistan. Both tours began with visits in the nation's capital to meet with wounded soldiers.
He played in the Catholic High School Athletic Association at Xavieran High School in Brooklyn and is a member of the school's Distinguished Alumni Hall of Fame.
THE BARRY ROHRSSEN FILE
Birthdate: June 24 in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Hometown: Brooklyn, N.Y.
Education: Bachelor of Science- Business Management, St. Francis, N.Y., 1983.
Coaching Career: Assistant Coach, University of Pittsburgh, 2013-current; Assistant Coach, Idaho Stampede (Portland Trailblazers), 2012-13; Head Coach, Manhattan College, 2006-11; Associate Head Coach, University of Pittsburgh, 2004-06; Assistant Coach, University of Pittsburgh, 2001-04; Director of Basketball Operations, University of Pittsburgh, 1999-2001; Director of Basketball Operations, University of Nevada Las Vegas, 1997-99; Administrative Assistant, University of Nevada Las Vegas, 1995-97; Assistant Coach, St. Francis, N.Y., 1993-95.
Playing Career: St. Francis, N.Y., 1981-83.