Central Connecticut men's basketball added Woodbury, CT native Ben Wood to the coaching staff, the program announced last Friday.
Wood, most recently an assistant at Arizona State, joins first-year head coach Patrick Sellers on the bench as the Blue Devils reinvent their coaching staff for the upcoming 2021-22 season.
"We are happy to welcome Ben Wood to the Blue Devil family," Sellers said in a release issued by CCSU. "Ben and I have worked together in the past and have been a part of some great teams. Ben will be a vital piece in helping us take this program to a championship level. Coach Wood will play a big role in our academics, recruiting and player development. I'm very happy to compete alongside Ben again."
Wood has been at Arizona State since 2015 when he joined head coach Bobby Hurley's staff as special assistant to the head coach.
He was part of a program that earned two NCAA tournament bids through 1980-81. In 2017-18, his team was the last unbeaten team in the nation at 12-0, earning a national ranking of third in the country.
The 2019-20 team won 20 games against the 13th-toughest schedule before the season was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Wood was also part of a program that had eight wins against ranked teams, including victories over No. 1-ranked Kansas and No. 2 Kansas in back-to-back seasons.
Prior to his time with the Sun Devils, Wood was at Buffalo in 2014-15 helping the Bulls earn a trip to the NCAA Tournament. He served a number of roles with the program, including team travel and film exchange.
He was in a similar role at the University of Rhode Island where he spent the 2012-13 season as the Rams' director of player development, running the team's video operations, coordinating film exchange and opponent breakdowns and edits. Wood also oversaw the program’s community relations program and team managers. On top of those responsibilities he was the liaison with the academic services office.
Wood’s roots in Connecticut grow deeper than his native town. A graduate of UConn, he earned both his bachelor's degree in 2007 and master's degree in 2009 in geography. While at UConn he served as the head manager for the men's basketball team and was a member of the program that won the 2011 National Championship. He also served as the Huskies' head graduate manager, and was part of the program advancing to two Final Fours and three Elite Eights. During his time at UConn, he was part two Big East Championships, in 2006 and 2011.
Wood joins Lamar Chapman, an assistant named to the program on June 28. Chapman was the interim head coach last season Northern Illinois University. He was also a coach at Stony Brook University before NIU, seeing success there, and was also a coach at Central Michigan University and Toledo. Prior to collegiate coaching, he was a coach at Muskegon Heights High School in Michigan, where he was a state runner-up twice.
"Lamar is a proven winner and has experienced tremendous success everywhere he's been," Sellers said. "He will be an integral part to helping us build back our championship culture that the University and state of Connecticut has grown accustomed to. Coach Chapman will play a major role in both recruiting and developing our student-athletes and will be a great mentor to them. I'm very excited to have him on board."