Many pundits were surprised last spring, when West Chester University assistant coach Ben Kay landed a head-coaching job at PSUAC affiliated school Penn State Brandywine. Kay has done a bang-up job so far. His team has already won more games than all of last year. Penn State Brandywine is 7-2 overall.

One of those losses was to Division I Penn at the Palestra in a game no coach or player will ever forget. “It was a great experience even though we lost [in a blowout],” said Kay. “I think it will really help us out in recruiting, and all of us here are still talking about it and spreading the word that we got that great opportunity.”

Kay is a bit surprised his team has jumped to a great record but admits he was expecting success. “We have 3 returning players and we brought in 11 other guys. These are all guys that [were heavily underrecruited]. They play with a chip on their shoulder. It’s kind of the mindset we go out with, and has helped us succeed. Literally, none of my new players were getting looked at by any other schools, and we have played that way. I wouldn’t say I am shocked that we have seven wins already, but I would say I knew we were going to get there and make this a winning program sooner than later.” Kay, who is only 28, said that he has seen his players treat him with more respect as the season has worn on. “They are listening to my every word and doing things I suggest in practice and games now. They were before, too, but I think there was some skepticism. I am a young unproven coach; winning changes everything. Our team is winning and playing well, and I think that has made it fun for everyone, and turned up the work ethic for everyone involved. It’s been very exciting.”

Kay said he is hoping his team will transition officially into NCAA Division III soon. The team is part of the USCAA right now, which is essentially the same thing except the squad can’t qualify for the NCAA post-season. “That’s one of our goals for sure.” He also said that freshman Rob Tinley from Haddon Heights (N.J.) High School is scoring 15 points a game and could be freshman of the year, as well as MVP of his conference, which is made up of other Penn State affiliated campuses. “No one wanted him and he may be the best player in the league already.”

Other standouts are Terrence Brown, James Fisher, Ameer Staggs, Isaiah Cook, and Dante Whitfield. “We are so athletic,” Kay said. “We press the whole game and we force 26 turnovers a game which is third in Division III. The kids have really bought in to how I like to play. Pressure and shoot threes and play fast.”




Jeremy Treatman - Contributor

Jeremy Treatman is the founder and co-director of the Scholastic Play-by-Play Classics and Sports Broadcasting Camps. Over 50 NBA players, including Lebron James, Kevin Durant, and Rajon Rondo played in his events when they were in high school. Jeremy wrote high school sports for the INQUIRER for 10 years, and was the first TV reporter for the HIgh School Sports Show on Channel 29 from 1994-2001. He currently is Comcast's announcer for all high school games.


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