Peninsula's Donald Rollman named Men's Basketball Head Coach
PORT ANGELES – Peninsula College enters a new era of Pirate men’s basketball with the official hiring of Donald Rollman, who served as interim head coach for 2018-19.
“I am very pleased to announce that the program is in great hands in Coach Rollman,” said Rick Ross, associate dean for athletics and student life. “It was a bit like being a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. He excelled and survived in each round of the process, and ultimately he prevailed.”
Peninsula College typically opens full-time positions and the process included a national search that began in February and concluded with the offer on Thursday afternoon, Ross said. Rollman served as interim following the June resignation of Mitch Freeman, who left to take the head coaching job at Corban University.
“We had 94 applicants from all over the world, we narrowed the field to five, any one of whom would have been outstanding as a college head coach, and Donald rose to the occasion,” Ross said. “His body of work in two years as an assistant here and one year as a head coach, the connections he made in our community and here on campus, his ability to recruit, his fund raising success, and most importantly, the relationships he built with his players set the bar very high. In the end, we felt he was the best fit to take our program forward.”
Rollman will be the sixth head coach in the 22-year modern history of Pirate men’s basketball. He took over the Pirate program in the summer of 2018 and not only managed to fill a roster, but he overcame some early season adversity to place third in the North Region, qualifying for the playoffs with a 7-7 league record and 10-19 overall mark. Only one other men’s basketball coach in Peninsula’s modern history took a team to the playoffs in his first year, Lance Von Vogt, who went on to win the NWAC championship that year (2010-11).
“I’m extremely excited to continue leading this basketball program and really start to build off of the foundation that we laid this season,” said Rollman. “The Olympic Peninsula is a special place, full of great people who have proven that fundraising for Peninsula College Athletics is unlike anywhere else. The number of people who have given and supported our programs to give Pirate student athletes the opportunity to be successful on and off the floor is inspiring. Thank you to our administration, Luke Robins, Jack Huls and Rick Ross, for believing in the vision of our program moving forward. I’m very grateful that I get to continue leading great student athletes here at PC. Go Pirates!”
Ross said he is looking forward to watching Rollman build on what he started this year.
“I am very excited to see what Donald can do with our program,” Ross added. “He has a great core of players coming back and some pretty high-level recruits he’s working to sign. I’m confident he will not only build a program that can win the NWAC, but that he’ll do it with players who understand what discipline and pride look like, who understand the value of an education, and who appreciate the opportunities they’ll have here to give back to the community. We also have a core of community basketball fans who have a high basketball IQ. I think they’ll appreciate the brand of basketball Donald will put on the floor.”
“In addition to basketball, we’re also confident he’ll continue to work well with our very generous Pirate Boosters and corporate sponsors, who’s contributions in scholarship fundraising provide our coaches the opportunity to be successful in both basketball and soccer,” Ross said.
Rollman, who has a Master’s Degree in Athletic Administration and Coaching, will begin his new contract as Athletic Development Coordinator and Head Men’s Basketball Coach on April 1.