BROOKLYN, N.Y. – After amassing an unprecedented 550 combined victories in 18 years as head coach of the St. Joseph's College (Brooklyn) women's basketball and softball teams, Frank P. Carbone has announced that he has stepped down from his coaching duties, but will remain as athletic director as SJC Athletics begins a new chapter opening play in the Skyline Conference this fall.
"It's a bittersweet feeling giving up the reins to something I've dedicated so much of my life to," said Carbone, "I'll cherish all the wonderful memories with the Lady Bears and always consider myself a coach above anything else, but with the new facility and conference, it's been an increasing challenge to give the teams and the department as a whole the attention it deserves in order to reach the next level of our development as a program."
Carbone, 47, joined St. Joseph's College as the head women's basketball coach in 1997 and over the course of 18 seasons has compiled a 271-246 mark highlighted by an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2012 – the first-and-only NCAA tournament berth in any sport in SJC Brooklyn history. Named United States Collegiate Athletic Association National Coach of the Year in 2003, Carbone led the Lady Bears to nine USCAA National Championship appearances and six Hudson Valley Conference championships, claiming the title in two of the last three seasons, capped off by his selection as HVIAC Co-Coach of the Year this past February.
As part of the SJC Brooklyn athletic program's rapid growth under his leadership, the Greenpoint, Brooklyn native started the softball program in 2002 and has since compiled a career .620 record (287-175-3) over 14 seasons, producing winning records in all but two seasons. The three-time AD3I Coach of the Year led Lady Bears Softball to eight USCAA National Championships, taking home a program-best third-place finish in 2010 while capturing nine Hudson Valley Conference titles.
Under Carbone's tutelage, he has developed 24 USCAA First Team All-Americans in both basketball and softball and while always preaching an academics-first mantra, procured over 50 Lady Bears who earned USCAA All-Academic honors in a coaching career that spanned three decades.
As athletic director and with the support of former SJC President S. Elizabeth Hill, CSJ, Carbone spearheaded the growth of Brooklyn Athletics from three varsity sports to now 13 sports with nearly 150 student-athletes and was the driving force leading the athletic department towards the attainment of NCAA Division III membership, which it successfully completed in 2011.
Another of Carbone's grand visions came to fruition this past December when the SJC Brooklyn campus finally opened the doors to The Hill Center, a 40,000 square foot, state-of-the-art athletic facility. Named Frank P. Carbone Court by a generous benefactor for his spirit and passion to the athletic department, the 290-seat, NCAA regulation arena serves as the first on-campus athletics venue for the men's and women's basketball and volleyball teams.
"I am so proud to have had such a profound influence on the lives of the hundreds of young women that I have had the wonderful opportunity to coach in almost two decades here at SJC. Words cannot express the gratitude and appreciation that I owe to the Lady Bears and their families for their belief and support of what we were trying to accomplish here at SJC. While I will certainly miss being on the sidelines and in the dugout, I will still be with the Lady Bears cheering them every step of the way. I am truly confident that my successors will continue to take the Lady Bears' to even greater heights in the years ahead."
A nationwide search for both vacant coaching positions is underway with the selected replacements to be announced in the near future.