University of Memphis basketball coach John Calipari rekindled a longtime association with Ed Schilling, naming the former Wright State coach an assistant on the U of M staff in the summer of 2003.
In only his first season on staff, Schilling helped direct the Tiger program to an outstanding campaign in 2003-04. Memphis posted a 22-8 overall record and a 12-4 Conference USA mark, and won a share of the league regular-season title, the program's first conference championship since 1995-96. The Tigers also made a return trip to the NCAA Tournament and recorded a first-round victory over South Carolina. Memphis finished the year ranked No. 24 in the Associated Press poll.
Following the season, the good news continued for the Memphis Tiger program. The 2003-04 signing class was ranked best in the nation, and two Tigers - under the tutelage of Calipari and his coaching staff - were selected to participate in Team USA trials for the World Championships For Young Men in mid-July. Furthermore, in ESPN.com's summer poll for the 2004-05 season, Memphis is ranked No. 19.
Schilling was a member of Calipari's coaching staff at Massachusetts during the Minutemen's 1996 run to the NCAA Final Four and a 35-2 record. When Calipari was named the vice president of basketball operations and basketball coach with the New Jersey Nets, Schilling joined him as an assistant with the NBA team. Schilling's meteoric rise in the coaching profession was chronicled in Sports Illustrated as he became the only coach ever to advance from the high school coaching ranks to the Final Four and finally to the bench of an NBA team in a period of 310 days.
After one season with the Nets, Schilling returned to collegiate coaching as he was named the head coach at Wright State in 1997. At the time, he was the second youngest Division I head coach in the nation.
Over a six-year career at Wright State, the Raiders were 75-93. One of the biggest wins in Wright State history came Dec. 30, 1999, when during Schilling's third season the Raiders defeated then sixth-ranked Michigan State 53-49 in front of a near-capacity crowd in WSU's Nutter Center. Many basketball analysts referred to the win as the most significant upset of the decade. Michigan State would go on to capture the NCAA Championship that year.
The following year Wright State began the season with a 9-1 record, the best Division I start in school history. The Raiders posted an 18-11 record and an 8-6 mark in the Midwestern Collegiate Conference and advanced to the semifinals of the MCC Tournament. He was named the 2001 MCC Coach of the Year by collegeinsider.com.
In 2002, Wright State knocked off 20th-ranked Butler on the road in Hinkle Fieldhouse, 90-87 in double overtime. The Raiders finished that season with a 17-11 mark. WSU was 10-18 in 2002-03.
As a collegian, Schilling was a four-year starting point guard at Miami (Ohio). He was a two-time team captain and, along with Ron Harper, helped lead the school to a pair of NCAA Tournaments. The three-time academic all-conference selection is still the single-game assist record holder in the Mid-American Conference and holds single game, season and career assists records at Miami.
Soon after graduating from Miami in 1988, Schilling was named the head coach at Western Boone High School in Thorntown, Ind. He led Western Boone to a school record for most wins in a season during the 1990-91 campaign, and after three seasons, was named the head coach at Logansport (Indiana) High School.
In arguably the most competitive prep conference in the nation, Logansport's basketball program improved each of Schilling's four seasons. In his final two seasons, Schilling's teams won back-to-back sectional championships while compiling the most wins at Logansport in more than 20 years.
In addition to the experience Schilling quickly gained as a young high school coach, he also spent his summers learning more about the game at the famed Five-Star Basketball Camp in Pennsylvania. Schilling's relationship with Five-Star Basketball Camp began as a camper while in high school. He continued his association with the camp as a college counselor during his playing days at Miami University. And after graduating from Miami and beginning his coaching career, he was a station master and head resident coach at Five-Star. He was inducted into the Five-Star Basketball Camp Hall of Fame in 2002.
Schilling is also the co-author of two books -- Guard Play, which was co-authored with Steve Alford, and Five Star Basketball, which was written with Howard Garfinkel. He has also created several teaching videotapes, including Playing the Point and Combination Defenses.