SEATTLE – (June 20) Seattle University men's basketball alumni Sam Kirby has returned to his alma mater, joining the Redhawks' coaching staff as an assistant coach, Head Coach Jim Hayford announced Wednesday.
"Having an alum of Seattle U on our staff is a tremendous asset and we're happy to welcome Sam back to campus," said Hayford. "Sam is recognized as one of the up-and-coming assistant coaches on the West Coast and we're excited that he chose to return to Seattle U."
Kirby returns to the Redhawk program following seven seasons of serving as an assistant coach at Cal Poly under Joe Callero. Kirby was involved in floor coaching, game planning and scouting, while also serving as the program's recruiting coordinator during his final three years.
"It’s been truly an amazing experience to be able to come back to the school, community and city that helped turn me into the man I am today," said Kirby. "This is a dream come true. Not many college coaches get to go back to their alma mater. Thank you to Head Coach Jim Hayford and the rest of the Redhawk staff for being so gracious during this process. I’m excited to be back and cannot wait to get to work."
Kirby was a member of the Seattle U squad for the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons, the latter year resulting in a 20-9 overall record, a Great Northwest Athletic Conference title and the program's first NCAA Division II Tournament berth in 38 years.
A Sacramento native, Kirby served as a student assistant coach at Seattle U during the 2007-08 campaign while completing a bachelor's degree in liberal studies with a minor in psychology. He went on to spend two seasons as an assistant at Shoreline Community College (2008-10), followed by a one-year stint at Cañada College (Redwood City, Calif.) where he was involved in all aspects of on-court coaching, strength and conditioning, recruiting and perimeter player development. He helped the Colts to a 20-6 overall record, a second-place finish in the Coast Conference with an 8-4 mark and a final No. 7 ranking in the California Community College Athletic Association coaches poll.
Kirby joined Callero's staff beginning with the 2011-12 season. Kirby’s influence on the Cal Poly guard play has been substantial with the Mustangs leading all NCAA Division I programs during the previous five seasons with just 9.62 turnovers committed per game. Additionally, Cal Poly has led the Big West Conference during the previous six years with a combined 1.24-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio
Cal Poly's backcourt strength has contributed directly to the program's overall success with the Mustangs capturing the program's first Big West Conference championship in 2014 and reaching the NCAA Tournament second round.
An All-Bay Valley Conference selection at San Joaquin Delta College (2003-05), Kirby helped the Mustangs to a 30-2 record during the 2004-05 season and a berth in the semifinals of that year's CCCAA state championships. A graduate of Sacramento's Foothill High School, Kirby assisted the program to the 2003 California Interscholastic Federation Division III state championship and a 36-2 record.
Kirby and his wife, Aspen, have one young son, Sam Kirby III.