June 28, 2010
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Providence College men's basketball coach Keno Davis announced today (June 28) that Kevin Gamble has been named coordinator of player development and video operations. Gamble has served as the head coach at University of Illinois at Springfield for the last eight years, posting a 130-79 mark. Gamble replaces Mike Mennenga who left last month.
In 2002, Gamble was named the first men's basketball head coach at the University of Illinois at Springfield. Gamble helped found the Prairie Stars men's basketball program. In 2005-06, the Prairie Stars won the AMC Tournament and advanced to the first round of the NAIA national tournament. By 2006-07, Gamble helped guide the squad to its first American Midwest Conference regular season title. He also led the squad to its second consecutive AMC Tournament title and helped the team advance to the second round of the NAIA national tournament. His team posted a 23-9 mark overall and an 11-1 record in conference play in 2006-07. For his efforts, Gamble was named AMC Coach of the Year for the second time.
"Kevin's experience as a 10-year NBA veteran along with his collegiate coaching experience will be beneficial to our program," Davis said. " We expect Kevin to have an immediate impact on the development of our student-athletes."
In 2008-09, his squad registered a 21-9 record, including a 10-4 mark in conference play. It was the team's final season of NAIA action as the program became a member of the NCAA in 2009-10, posting an 11-13 record (7-11 Great Lakes Valley Conference) in Division II.
"I am excited to begin this chapter of my life at Providence College," Gamble said. "This is a great opportunity as I will be working to help make the players and the program better. Having played for Keno Davis' dad, I am really looking forward to working with Keno."
Gamble was drafted by the Portland Trailblazers (63rd pick overall) in the third round of the 1987 NBA Draft. In 1988, the Boston Celtics selected Gamble as a free agent and he played with the Celtics until 1994 when he signed with the Miami Heat as a free agent. From 1990-94, Gamble was under the watchful eye of former Friar Head Coach Dave Gavitt, who was the Celtics CEO. He was traded to the Sacramento Kings in 1996, where he played for one season. Gamble averaged 9.5 ppg and shot 50.2 percent from the field, including 36 percent from three-point territory in 649 career NBA games.
"It was great to have Kevin as a teammate," former Celtics star Larry Bird said. "He was very competitive and worked hard all the time. I know it has carried over into coaching. He's a good hire and a great addition for Providence."
Gamble attended Lanphier High School in Springfield, Ill. He led his team to the Class AA state title in 1983. He attended Lincoln College for two years before transferring to the University of Iowa for his final two seasons. In his senior season, Gamble played for Keno Davis' father, Dr. Tom Davis, where he helped lead the team to a 30-5 record and a berth to the NCAA Tournament Regional finals.
"Kevin Gamble is great hire and a wonderful addition to Keno's staff." Gavitt said. "He is a remarkable person and will serve as a outstanding role model for the student-athletes."
Gamble, a native of Springfield, Ill., and his wife Alesha, have one son, Kevin, Jr., and one daughter, Averi.