Staff
Head Coach
Richard Barron

On March 5, 2018, University of Maine Director of Athletics Karlton Creech announced that Richard Barron will become the 22nd head coach of the Maine men’s basketball team.

Barron previously served as a Special Assistant to the Director Athletics at UMaine since December 1, 2017. He was the head coach of the UMaine women’s basketball team from 2011 to 2017 before taking a medical leave of absence in January 2017.

In 2018-19, Barron will enter his 18th season as a head coach. As head coach of the UMaine women’s team, he brought the program back to its winning ways, putting together a winning season in his third season in 2013-14. Barron put together back-to-back 20 win seasons in 2014-15 and 2015-16, and was named the America East Coach of the Year after the 2015 season.

The Black Bears went to the postseason for three consecutive seasons after going 4-24 in 2013-14. In seven seasons at Maine, Barron compiled a record of 85-89, along with an overall head coaching record of 232-228. In the America East, Barron owns a record of 46-34 and two regular season championships.

The 2018-19 season won’t be Barron’s first coaching men. His first collegiate coaching position from 1991-95 was an assistant coach for the University of the South-Sewanee men’s team. He took his first head coaching position the following season, taking the helm of the University of the South-Sewanee women’s team, where he posted a 77-48 record.

Following the 2015-16 seasons, in which Barron guided the Black Bears back to their second-straight WNIT berth after capturing another America East regular season title, Barron agreed to a four-year extension with the University of Maine

The year would see Maine reach the America East Championship game and once again return to the WNIT after a 26 win campaign, one short of the school record. The Black Bears went undefeated on their home court, moving their home win streak to 19-0. The home crowds continued to grow as Maine was top in the conference and second in New England, only to UConn, in attendance (2,008).

Barron’s mentoring throughout the 2014-15 season guided the Black Bears to their highest achievement of success in over 10 years as Maine reached the 20-win plateau for the first time since 2004-05 and totaled its highest amount of wins (23) in 11 years. The success of 2014-15 brought Maine back into the national picture as it reached a #19 ranking in the College Insider Mid-Major Top-25, returned to the WNIT for the first time since 2005 and captured the 2015 America East Regular Season Co-Championship.

Baylor compiled a 54-13 record to go along with two trips to the NCAA tournament, including a run to the Sweet 16 in 2008-09; in the two seasons Barron was with the Bears’ staff.

Barron began his Division I head coaching career at Princeton as he spent six seasons at the helm of the Tigers’ program. After taking over the program fresh off a 2-25 season prior to his arrival, Barron guided the Tigers to an 11-16 record in his first season, making Princeton one of the most improved teams in the country that year. During his six years at Princeton, Barron managed the Tigers to an Ivy League title in 2005-06, setting a school record for overall wins (21-7) and conference wins (12-2). Barron mentored five different players to All-Ivy League honors while at Princeton.

Before his time at Princeton, Barron spent five seasons at the University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn, compiling a 77-48 record during his tenure. In his final season at the University of the South, Barron guided the squad to its first ever conference championship and a No. 8 national ranking in Division III.

Prior to his time coaching the Sewanee women, Barron was the assistant men’s coach at Sewanee for four years. Barron came to the University of Maine with an 11-year head coaching career record of 152-139.

In the summer of 2006, Barron looked to expand his coaching knowledge as he traveled to Treviso, Italy with the NBA’s Phoenix Suns to observe and study under current New York Knicks head coach Mike D’Antoni. In 1998, Barron was one of just three collegiate coaches selected to serve as a floor coach at the American Basketball League’s combine. He also served as the Ivy League Representative for the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association from 2003-06.

Barron, who grew up in both Florida and Tennessee, graduated from Kenyon College with a B.S. in biology. He graduated cum laude after being named to the dean’s list all eight semesters. Barron played both basketball and baseball while at Kenyon.

Barron and his wife, Maureen, a former Princeton softball coach, are the proud parents of twin daughters, Lane and Rae, and younger son, Billy.

Director of Operations
Jason Coleman

Jason Coleman was named the director of basketball operations on March 30, 2018.

Coleman, the former Orono High School boys’ basketball coach, has immersed himself as a coach in the local sports scene in the Greater Bangor area. As the head coach at Orono since 2011, Coleman led the Red Riots to three finals appearances over seven seasons.

As an AAU coach, he guided his teams in Maine to three state championships, while also coaching teams in Indiana and South Carolina to multiple state titles.

“Jason has been coaching basketball since he was 18 years old,” said Barron “He too loves Maine, loves the great tradition of basketball in our state, and knows many of the coaches and players. Jason will serve as our Director of Basketball Operations and will coordinate our recruiting efforts on-campus and direct our summer camps. Jason and his family will be great additions to our department and I know he will be an invaluable asset to me.”

Coleman also coached football at various levels, serving as the offensive coordinator of the JV team at Husson University and as the quarterbacks coach for the varsity team in the 2011 season. At Orono high school, he had served as the offensive coordinator since 2014.

“I am very excited to be joining the University of Maine athletics family,” said Coleman. “I am very grateful to Capt. Jim Settele and Coach Barron for this terrific opportunity, one that I am extremely excited about. I have known Coach Barron for many years now and I look forward to working alongside him and contribute to the building of the men’s program. Maine is an outstanding place to raise a family and we are excited to stay in Orono and take this next step in my career.”

Assistant Coach
Kevin Reed

Kevin Reed enters his first season as an assistant coach of the in 2018-19.

On March 30, 2018, head coach Richard Barron announced that Kevin Reed has been hired on as an assistant coach of Maine men’s basketball.

Reed, a 2007 UMaine graduate and the fourth leading scorer in program history, returns to Orono after serving as the AD and the head boy’s basketball coach at Bangor Christian since 2010.

“Kevin Reed is an excellent coach but an even better person,” said Barron. “Everyone loved Kevin as a player here at Maine and since his return to Bangor 8 years ago, he has ingratiated himself again in our community. Kevin and his family have become fixtures on the basketball scene in Maine and he will be a tremendous role model for our players. His ability to do skill work with our guards, scout opponents, his international and prep-school connections, his experience as an athletic administrator, and experience here as a player will all serve our program and our players well.”

Reed, a former standout student-athlete at UMaine, ranks fourth all-time in school history career points (1,601) and eight in career rebounds (732), and third in steals (225). He holds the Black Bear record for career games played (119) and was honored by the America East all four of his seasons as a Black Bear.

After Reed’s successful career as a Black Bear, he played overseas for three seasons in both Belgium and Germany. He returned to the states in 2010, and took the helm of the Bangor Christian boy’s basketball program the same year.

“Words cannot express how excited I am to return to the University of Maine in this capacity,” Reed said. “I love the vision Coach Barron has for the future of the program and I’m overjoyed to play a role in seeing it come to fruition. I’m confident that my past experience as a student-athlete, professional athlete, coach, and administrator have prepared me for this opportunity. I look forward to helping impact the same program that has greatly impacted me.”

Reed graduated from UMaine in 2007 with a bachelor of science degree in human development and family relations.

Assistant Coach
Edniesha Curry

Edniesha Curry returns to Orono for her first season as an assistant coach with Maine men’s basketball team in 2018-19. Curry joins the Black Bears as the only woman currently serving as a full-time assistant coach in NCAA Division I men’s basketball.

She previously served as a player development and assistant coach for the UMaine women’s basketball team from July 2015 to May 2017 under Coach Barron. Since leaving UMaine, she worked with the NBA Assistant Coaches’ Program and worked with the Atlanta Classical Academy as the Women’s Athletic Program Manager.

With the NBA ACP, she gained experience working at the NBA Draft Combine and the NBA G League Showcase which included player development and scouting duties.

“I am really blessed to have the opportunity to work the sidelines with Coach Barron,” said Curry. “He has always believed in my abilities as a coach and I am grateful for him bringing me back to UMaine to coach alongside him with the men’s basketball program.”

Before coming to UMaine, Curry was the head basketball coach across Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. She developed skills for players from ages 6-18, focusing on rebuilding the sport in the Vietnam. Prior to that, she was the head coach for the WCBA’s Shanxi Flames Women’s Profession Club in Taiyuan, China. Overall, Coach Eddie has held various positions in Vietnam, China, Israel and Palestine.

After her professional basketball career, she was a marketing assistant with NBA and WNBA Global Basketball with Adidas.

A graduate of the University of Oregon in 2002, Curry was drafted by the Charlotte Sting with the 41st overall pick in the WNBA draft. She played in the WNBA for the Phoenix Mercury and the Los Angeles Sparks along with teams overseas in Greece, Poland, Israel, and Hungary from 2002 to 2009.

Curry stared in her collegiate career at Cal State Northridge, becoming the school’s all-time leader in 3-pointers with 168. She led the Matadors in scoring for three-consecutive seasons, averaging 15.3 points per game as a junior for the Matadors. She transferred to Oregon in 2000, earning All-Pac 10 honorable mention as a senior. She led the Ducks to a WNIT Championship, averaging 9.8 points per game while dishing out a total of 104 assists.

“Eddie was an easy choice as an assistant coach,” said Barron “She is extremely talented at developing players - especially within the context of defensive and offensive systems. Eddie teaches skills that can be utilized with frequency in a game. Eddie is also great at scouting opponents as well as “self-scouts” - breaking down video to find areas of improvement. She knows Maine, knows many of our players, and knows me and my style of play. She has great connections around the world from her extensive playing and coaching background. Our players will be very fortunate to have someone as gifted and enthusiastic as Eddie coaching them.”

Curry holds a bachelor science degree in sociology from the University of Oregon, and earned an MBA from American InterContinental University in 2006.

Assistant Coach
Igor Vrzina

Igor Vrzina heads into his first season as an assistant coach with Maine men’s basketball in 2018-19. Vrzina previously served as the head boy’s basketball coach at Lee Academy in Lee, Maine.

In four seasons at the helm of the Pandas, Vrzina put together an impressive record of 98-51.

“Igor is an accomplished player and coach who brought many talented players to the state of Maine during his tenure at Lee Academy - some of whom wear a Black Bear uniform today,” said Barron.

“Igor has tremendous recruiting ties throughout New England from his prep school experience, as well as internationally. Igor will work primarily with our posts while assisting with scouting and game planning. He has a great feel for our program and will articulate well the opportunities UMaine offers. He and his family loved living in Maine and are excited to return.”

Vrzina reunites with several of his former players in Miks Antoms, Dusan Majstorovic, Ilija Stojiljkovic, and Lewis Wang who all attended Lee Academy before coming to UMaine.

Before coming to the Pine Tree State, he served as an assistant coach for BC Grifoni in Ukraine 2010 to 2011 and as an administrative assistant for the Illinois State University men’s basketball team from 2008 to 2010.

“I am very excited about the opportunity to work with Coach Barron and the UMaine men’s basketball program,” said Vrzina. “After several years of coaching at Lee Academy Prep, I am excited to be back in Maine. I have built relationships nationally and internationally and I am hoping to help build a successful team.”

He was a student-athlete at Hill College and the University of Idaho before landing at Abilene Christian University. He was team captain for the Wildcats in his lone season in Texas.

Vrzina holds a bachelor of science degree from Abilene Christian University in international studies.