2015-16 Men's Basketball
Bryce Drew
Head Coach
Roger Powell Jr.
Assistant Coach
Luke Gore
Assistant Coach
Matt Lottich
Assistant Coach
Luke Simons
Director of Basketball Operations
Derek Bol
Strength and Conditioning Coach
Full Roster
Roger Powell Jr.

Roger Powell Jr.

Assistant Coach

Email mensbasketball@valpo.edu

Roger Powell Jr. was named the 23rd head coach of the Valparaiso University men’s basketball program on April 7, 2023. 

After helping guide Gonzaga University to a 121-13 record during his four seasons as an assistant coach, Powell returned to Valpo, where he was part of head coach Bryce Drew’s staff from 2011-2016 and led the team to 124 wins in five seasons, including a program-record 30 victories and a National Invitation Tournament (NIT) title game appearance in 2015-16. Powell becomes the first Black head coach in the history of the Valpo men’s basketball program.

Powell was part of head coach Mark Few’s Gonzaga staff as the Bulldogs reached the 2021 national championship game after winning their first 31 games of the season. During Powell’s first season on staff in 2019-20, Gonzaga was 31-2 at the time the NCAA college basketball season was halted due to COVID-19. The Bulldogs reached the Sweet Sixteen each of his final three seasons on staff, including two Elite Eight appearances and the aforementioned trip to the 2021 national title game. The 2020-21 team spent the entire season ranked No. 1 in the nation by the Associated Press. The Bulldogs were the No. 1 overall seed in back-to-back NCAA Tournaments in 2021 and 2022.

Prior to his arrival at Gonzaga, Powell served as the associate head coach at Vanderbilt University under Bryce Drew from 2016-2019. In his first season in Nashville, he helped lead the Commodores to an NCAA Tournament appearance. Vanderbilt notched five top-25 wins, six top-50 victories and 11 top-100 RPI wins while playing the toughest strength of schedule nationally.

During Powell’s first stint on the Valpo bench, he was part of four Horizon League regular-season championships in a five-year period while also leading the 2012-13 and 2014-15 squads to Horizon League tournament titles and NCAA Tournament appearances. Valpo reached postseason tournaments in each of his five seasons on staff, including the memorable run to the NIT title game in 2016 which featured wins over Florida State, Saint Mary’s and BYU.

A product of Joliet West High School and a native of Joliet, Ill., Powell was a three-year starter for the University of Illinois during his playing days, earning Honorable Mention All-Big Ten recognition in each of his final two seasons after being named to the Big Ten All-Tournament Team as a sophomore. His winning track record dates as far back as his days playing for the Illini, when he helped the team to three Big Ten regular-season titles, two Big Ten Tournament crowns and three Sweet Sixteen berths. During his senior year in 2004-05, Powell was part of an Illini team that finished 37-2, won 29 straight to open the season and reached the national title game.

Powell accumulated 1,178 points and 531 rebounds during his four-year career at Illinois. He finished his career ranked among the top 30 scorers in program history. Following his collegiate tenure, Powell began a professional career that included a stint in the NBA with the Utah Jazz during the 2006-2007 season. He also played for the Rockford Lightning (CBA, 2005-06), Arkansas Rimrockers (2006-07, D-League), Siviglia Wear Teramo (Italy, 2007-08), Murcia (Spain, 2009-10), JDA Dijon (France, 2010) and Skyliners Frankfurt (Germany, 2010-11).

Off the court, Powell founded RPJ Ministries Organization, which mentors and trains young leaders to be Godly examples on their sports team and school campuses. He also founded Integrity Sports Corporation, a company focused on building basketball skills and integrity of high school and junior high athletes. Powell is a 2005 graduate of the University of Illinois with a degree in speech communications and received his master’s degree in Sports Administration from Valpo in 2016. 

Powell and his wife, Tara, have four children – Bria, Liam, Gabriel and Faith.

Coach Powell Playing Experience

2001-2005 - Illinois

2005-2006 - Rockford Lightning (CBA)

2006 - Utah Jazz (NBA)

2006-2007 - Arkansas Rimrockers (D-League)

2007-2008 - Siviglia Wear Teramo (Italy)

2008-2009 - Hapoel Jerusalem (Israel)

2009-2010 - Murcia (Spain)

2010 - JDA Dijon (France)

2010-2011 - Skyliners Frankfurt (Germany)

Coach Powell Coaching Experience

2011-2016 - Valparaiso Assistant Coach

2016-2019 - Vanderbilt Associate Head Coach

2019-2023 - Gonzaga Assistant Coach

Present - Valparaiso Head Coach