Men’s basketball announces O’Connor new head coach: Photo of the Day 4/30/18


Coach Chris O’Connor delivers a speech after being introduced as the new head of the basketball program.

by Jacob Bolger, Editor

On April 30th, 2018, a school-wide announcement notified all students and staff that there was a change to the Linganore Basketball team coaching staff, inviting anyone interested to attend a meeting in the gym during PREP.  Assistant football coach Chris O’Connor will be head basketball coach.

At the end of the 2017 basketball season, Coach Tom Kraft announced that he was going to retire from the position after a highly successful 12 years as the varsity coach. Throughout his 12 year career, the team compiled a 152-127 record.

“I am very excited for coach O’Connor. When coaching is done right, it is a 24-hour-a-day, 365-days-per-year type of job. I stepped down from the position in order to find more time to do other things,” said Kraft.

At the meeting, Athletic Director Sonny Joseph announced that after coach interviews were completed, the new coach was Chris O’Connor.

Class of 2019 Member Christian Nolan said, “I am excited to see where our program goes under the guidance of the new coaching staff, and believe that we will be pushed to be the best players we can possibly be.”

O’Connor is not new to coaching sports, and he helped lead the immensely successful football team to a state title in 2017, as well as coaching basketball, baseball, and unified bocce. He has been surveying vacancies for coaching positions for several years, and when the opportunity to coach the men’s basketball team appeared, he interviewed for the position.

O’Connor also played basketball in high school for the Urbana team.  In fact, he was a three-sport athlete with recognition in all three:  basketball, baseball and football.  

To returning players, Coach O’Connor said, “I am going to challenge you to do things you have never done before. This year, I am taking the best of the best, and on my team, I want the players who are going to work the hardest and perform the greatest. I expect to go to the Final Four, win the game, and become state champions. If you expect anything less than that, you are in the wrong place.”

The change in coaching staff is the beginning of a new chapter for the program, and the highly successful men’s basketball program will likely continue to perform better and better with every season. Although O’Connor does not plan ro make an overhaul to the successful program, he does believe that every coach has their own philosophy and plans to adjust the program to meet his philosophy.

“I thought that taking on the role of head coach was an exciting opportunity, and I feel like I’m in a unique spot in my career where I am ready to be a head coach. I really did feel like this was a great opportunity. Here at Linganore we have a great school, great administration, and I thought this was something that I’d really like to do,” said O’Connor.

“I believe that Coach O’Connor brings a lot of hope to our program in the future, and I believe he will really push us to play our hardest and succeed as a team,” said Class of 2021 member Jason Byrd.