Leibovitz Named Men's Basketball Coach
Dan Leibovitz speaks at a press conference Friday after being introduced as the University of Hartford's new head men's basketball coach.
Leibovitz becomes the ninth men's basketball coach in University of Hartford history. He comes to Hartford after having spent the past 10 seasons with Hall of Fame Head Coach John Chaney at Temple.
"The hiring of Coach Leibovitz represents a significant commitment to our men's basketball program," said University of Hartford President Walter Harrison. "He is a person of great character and substance, and I have full confidence that we will experience success under his leadership."
Leibovitz joined the Temple staff at the start of the 1996-97 season and helped the Owls to 10 straight postseason appearances, including five NCAA Tournaments (1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001) and a pair of Elite Eight appearances (1999, 2001). Temple also won four Atlantic 10 Conference regular season championships (1998, 1999, 2000, 2002) and two conference championships (2000, 2001) during his tenure, which tied for the longest among current A-10 assistant coaches. As Chaney's right-hand man and top recruiter, his record while on the Owl staff was 201-124 (.618).
"Throughout the search process, Coach Leibovitz's name kept coming to the forefront," said University of Hartford Director of Athletics Pat Meiser-McKnett. "The message was loud and clear that he loves the game, is committed to working hard and, most importantly, working with the highest level of integrity. He has had a significant impact in every area of a very successful Temple basketball program, from coaching and recruiting to public relations and player development."
Leibovitz said he is “ecstatic” to be coming to Hartford. "I am extremely impressed with the leadership and mission of the University of Hartford under President Harrison," Leibovitz said. "I'm joining the University at a time of tremendous growth and see it as an opportunity to build a successful basketball team with a winning tradition of which our students, alumni and community can be proud.
"The foundation for winning is already in place at Hartford," Leibovitz added. "The quality of play in the America East Conference is high, we have great on-campus facilities, and there is a strong direction within the Athletics Department. The University of Hartford and our basketball program have a great deal to offer, and this will allow us to recruit at a high level both locally and nationally."
In 2005, Leibovitz was thrown into the role of acting coach during the final three regular season contests and Temple’s two Atlantic 10 Tournament games, as Chaney served a self-imposed, then University-sanctioned suspension. The Owls won three of the five contests and ended the season by advancing to the National Invitation Tournament. He also served as the Owls' head coach for the final game this past season against Akron in the NIT, as Chaney did not coach the game in order to be with his wife, who was undergoing a medical procedure.
Leibovitz, who completed his master's degree in the Sport Management and Leisure Studies program at Temple in 1998, is a 1996 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. A product of Bryn Mawr, Pa., he was a three-year varsity letterman in basketball at Episcopal Academy under Philadelphia coaching great Dan Dougherty.
Leibovitz, 32, is married to the former Nancy Abrams. They are expecting their first child this summer.
What Others are Saying About Coach Leibovitz:
"This is one of the greatest days of my life because Danny is my 'son.' I have know him since he was a young boy. He went about this in an aggressive manner and did it on his own without anyone making calls to the AD or President. He has been loyal to the [Temple] program and to me for a long time. I am as proud of the University of Hartford as I am of him for making this choice." - John Chaney, recently retired Temple University men's basketball coach, member of the Hall of Fame
"Dan is one of the brightest young coaches in the East and is well respected by his peers. He'll bring an undying commitment to the University of Hartford basketball program, and people will soon see the same commitment from his players. I wish Dan the best of luck." - Jay Wright, Villanova University men's basketball coach