EDWARDSVILLE – SIUE Director of Athletics Tim Hall has extended men's basketball Head Coach Brian Barone's contract through the 2023-2024 season. Barone has served as the Cougars' acting head coach since March 2019.

"I have spent significant time, since my arrival in early August, observing, watching, listening and asking questions – department-wide, but especially within men's basketball," Hall said. "It is clear to me that Brian has the program moving in the right direction. He loves and respects his young men and it is reciprocated. He is a consummate educator and has his players' welfare and success, academically and athletically, as his highest priority."

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"First and foremost, I would like to thank Chancellor (Randy) Pembrook, Tim Hall and all of our administration for their confidence in me and their support of our program," Barone said. "Since March 12, when Brad Hewitt gave me the opportunity to lead the SIUE basketball program, I began working to establish a culture and develop the character of this team into a program that this University and this community will be proud to support."

Barone had been an assistant at SIUE for two seasons before being named acting head coach. His first season is underway and already includes an exhibition win over Fontbonne and a regular season victory over Quincy.

"Providing an extension for Brian now will help with continuity, in all phases of the program, which is so important," Hall added. "I look forward to working with Brian and am eager to see what can be accomplished."

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Barone previously was on staff at Green Bay, at Indiana University, under his college Head Coach Tom Crean, and at Marquette. His first Division I coaching experience came at Illinois State in 2003, where he helped resurrect a program under Head Coach Porter Moser that had just eight wins a year before his arrival.

"I have been a part of several established programs and understand that the commitment of a quality leader is vital," Barone added. "Tim is that leader. Extending belief to another person is an empowering tool, and the belief that Tim has shown to me is fully reciprocated. I look forward to being a part of Tim Hall's vision for the future of SIUE Athletics.

"I am not in this position without the support of my wife Mimi and our family. We have been openly welcomed by the Edwardsville community since our arrival. We are fortunate to be able to call Edwardsville home for several years to come."

The Cougars' season continues Saturday with a road contest at Incarnate Word. SIUE returns home to face Northern Illinois Sat., Nov. 23.

"Not only am I privileged to be the head coach at a great Division I institution, but I am extremely proud to be the coach of these young men," Barone said. "They are each important individuals to me, and I cannot thank them, and our dedicated staff, enough for trusting in me and being part of our 'Find A Way' mentality."

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