Nolan sees good opportunity at Naperville North

Updated 5/25/2018 4:18 PM

Marist High School might always be in Gene Nolan's blood, but he's thrilled for the chance to bring fresh blood to Naperville North's boys basketball program.

Pending board approval by Naperville School District 203, the 44-year-old Naperville resident will be hired to teach and coach at Naperville North, where he'll replace retiring Jeff Powers.

While wrapping up end-of-the-school-year duties at Marist next week, Nolan also plans to transition to working with the Huskies. He'll start by getting to know his new players and assistant coaches.

"It was definitely a tough decision to leave Marist, but I saw this as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," Nolan said. "I'm really looking forward to building new relationships at Naperville North."

Nolan will shift from one successful basketball program to another.

A 1992 Marist graduate, he's coached with the RedHawks for 22 years, including the last 18 as head coach. Nolan's teams claimed six regional titles and the East Suburban Catholic Conference title in 2017. Nine times the RedHawks won at least 20 games.

He inherits a Naperville North team coming off a 26-3 season and the DuPage Valley Conference championship. In 2017 the Huskies won their first sectional title since 1994.

Naperville North is primed for another good season next winter with the return of 6-foot-7 Tom Welch, who holds numerous Division I offers after averaging 13.5 points and 6.6 rebounds as a junior.

"I'm really grateful for my 22 years of memories at Marist, and I look forward to building 22 years of memories at Naperville North," Nolan said. "Me and my family are really looking forward to fully immersing ourselves in the community."

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