Oliver Purnell: Wikis


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Oliver Purnell
Purnell in January 2007
Title Head coach
College Clemson
Sport Basketball
Born May 19, 1953 (1953-05-19) (age 56)
Place of birth Berlin, Maryland
Career highlights
CAA Tournament Championship (1992)
CAA Regular Season Championship (1993, 1994)
A-10 Coach of the Year (1998)
CAA Coach of the Year (1993)
Big South Coach of the Year (1991)
Playing career
1972–1975 Old Dominion
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
Old Dominion (asst.)
Maryland (asst.)
Old Dominion

Oliver Purnell (born May 19, 1953) is an American college basketball coach at Clemson University.


Early years

Purnell was born in Berlin, Maryland and attended Stephen Decatur High School. Purnell was recruited to play basketball at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia. While at Old Dominion, Purnell enjoyed a highly successful playing career, finishing 18th on ODU's all time scoring list with 1,090 points and leading the Monarchs to the 1975 NCAA Division II national championship.[1]. That year, Purnell was selected by Converse as an honorable mention Division II All-American.

Purnell averaged 14.4 points a game his senior year and 13.8 as a junior. He scored 25 points against Randolph-Macon in the NCAA South Atlantic Regional Championship game in 1975. As a junior, he averaged 6.7 assists per game and tallied 181 for the season. He was accorded the team MVP honors his senior year.

Purnell also dished out 474 career assists, which placed him sixth on the school's all-time list. He still shares ODU's single game steal record with eight against Washington and Lee in 1975.

The Milwaukee Bucks drafted Purnell in the sixth round of the 1975 NBA Draft.[1]

Purnell was inducted in to the Stephen Decatur High School Hall of Fame on Sept. 19, 2008. Oliver was inducted into the ODU Sports Hall of Fame in April 1988.

Coaching career

Purnell became a graduate assistant coach at ODU in July 1975, eventually becoming a full time assistant at the university. During Purnell's tenure as a full time assistant, he helped ODU reach the post season seven times (3 NCAAs and 4 NITs).[2] Lefty Driesell hired Purnell in 1985 to serve as an assistant on his Maryland staff. Purnell served three seasons at Maryland before being selected as head coach at Radford University. Purnell is credited with one of the biggest one year turnarounds in NCAA history as his 1990-91 Radford club posted a 22-7 record, a 15 game improvement over the previous season.[3]. In 1994, he accepted a position as head coach at the University of Dayton where he led the Flyers to two NCAA tournament appearances (2000, 2003) before accepting the head coaching job at Clemson University shortly after losing to #13 Tulsa in the 2003 tournament.

During his tenure at Clemson, he has built the program steadily, improving each subsequent season. In 2007, Purnell took his team to the championship game of the NIT, losing to West Virginia in the final, following wins against Syracuse, Air Force, and Ole Miss. In 2008, he guided the Tigers to a third-place 10-6 record in the Atlantic Coast Conference and a runner-up position in the ACC Tournament in Charlotte, losing to North Carolina by 5 points. The 2007-2008 season marked Clemson's first appearance in the NCAA Tournament in ten years.

On March 18, 2008, Clemson extended Purnell's contract through 2014 and raised his salary.[2]

Head coaching record

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Radford (Big South Conference) (1988–1991)
1988-1989 Radford 15-13 5-7 T-5th
1989-1990 Radford 7-22 3-9 7th
1990-1991 Radford 22-7 12-2 2nd
Radford: 44-42 20-18
Old Dominion (Colonial Athletic Association) (1991–1994)
1991-1992 Old Dominion 15-15 8-6 T-3rd NCAA 1st Round
1992-1993 Old Dominion 21-8 11-3 T-1st NIT 2nd Round
1993-1994 Old Dominion 21-10 10-4 T-1st NIT 2nd Round
Old Dominion: 57-33 29-13
Dayton (Great Midwest Conference/Atlantic 10 Conference) (1994–2003)
1994-1995 Dayton 7-20 0-12
1995-1996 Dayton 15-14 6-10 4th-West
1996-1997 Dayton 13-14 6-10 4th-West
1997-1998 Dayton 21-12 11-5 3rd-West NIT 2nd Round
1998-1999 Dayton 11-17 5-11 5th-West
1999-2000 Dayton 22-9 11-5 1st-West NCAA 1st Round
2000-2001 Dayton 21-13 9-7 6th NIT Quarterfinals
2001-2002 Dayton 21-11 10-6 3rd-West NIT 1st Round
2002-2003 Dayton 24-6 14-2 2nd-West NCAA 1st Round
Dayton: 155-116 72-68
Clemson (Atlantic Coast Conference) (2003–present)
2003-2004 Clemson 10-18 3-13 9th
2004-2005 Clemson 16-16 5-11 9th NIT 1st Round
2005-2006 Clemson 19-15 7-9 9th NIT 2nd Round
2006-2007 Clemson 25-11 7-9 T-8th NIT Runner-up
2007-2008 Clemson 24-10 10-6 3rd NCAA 1st Round
2008-2009 Clemson 23-9 9-7 T-5th NCAA 1st Round
2009-2010 Clemson 21-10 9-7 T-5th NCAA 1st Round
Clemson: 138-89 50-62
Total: 394-280

      National Champion         Conference Regular Season Champion         Conference Tournament Champion
      Conference Regular Season & Conference Tournament Champion       Conference Division Champion

External links




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