Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Patterson to Clifton Official; Abraham Big in Vegas
As first reported here last month, former Paterson Catholic and Paterson Eastside head coach Tommie Patterson is the new coach at Clifton (NJ) High School, the second-largest school in the state. The hiring became official Wednesday night.
“I feel tremendously honored to be given the opportunity to be the next head boys basketball coach at Clifton High School,” Patterson said. “Our conference is very competitive but I believe the program is untapped with all the support it has — both in terms of fan base and resources.”
Patterson will continue to teach at Eastside and work toward obtaining a Special Education certificate.
Patterson, 38, spent last season as the first assistant under Eastside head coach Donald Davis. The Ghosts reached the Passaic County championship game, falling to Paterson Catholic, but went on to win the North 1, Group 4 sectional title.
The year before, Patterson was the head coach at Eastside, but he was forced out of the job because he was not properly certificated. He is now in the process of getting a Master’s Degree to become certificated.
Patterson was also offered the head coaching job at Berkeley College in West Paterson but turned that down to focus on his classwork and teaching obligations.
Prior to his stint at Eastside, Patterson was the head coach at Paterson Catholic, sending numerous players to the Division I ranks and leading PC to the 2002 Passaic County title.
A player’s coach who relates well to many athletes in the Paterson area, he owns career victories over both St. Anthony head coach Bob Hurley and St. Patrick head coach Kevin Boyle.
A Kennedy graduate, he won three straight Passaic County titles and a state sectional title in the 1980s as a player, and was a coach on teams that won state sectional titles at both Paterson Catholic and Eastside.
Clifton struggled last year after former coach John Michael Santulli left, but Patterson is a proven winner who should get things turned around relatively quickly.
ABRAHAM BLOWING UP IN VEGAS Patterson also reported that Karon Abraham, a 5-10 senior guard at Eastside, is playing well in Las Vegas with the Playaz Basketball Club and has received offers from numerous D-1 schools, including Robert Morris, LIU and East Tennessee State. Notre Dame has also expressed interest.
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.