Brooks Sales is back on the Main Line this month, joining Jay Wright's staff as the Director of Student-Athlete Development. The Steve Lappas-era player did his first stint with the Wildcats around the turn of the millenium, graduating in 2002 and first appearing as a starter in 1999, when he helped the 'Cats to a late-season turnaround to get them back into the NCAA Tournament field.
Sales' was a senior captain during Jay Wright's first season at Villanova, helping the 'Cats to win 19 games that year. He ranks eighth all-time at Villanova in rebounding with 858 and scored 1,015 career points over four seasons. He won the inaugural Villanova Basketball Award -- for the player that best embodies the core values of the program -- in 2002.
After college, Sales spent a decade playing professionally in Europe, retiring as an athlete in 2012. He takes on a role that was created a few years back when Curtis Sumpter joined the Villanova staff and re-named a year ago when Jason Fraser was hired.
Fraser will move on to coach in the NBA D-League with the Austin Toros. Curtis Sumpter left the Wildcats to take an assistant coaching job with the Philadelphia 76ers last year. Though the Student-Athlete Development position is not a "bench" coaching position, or one with recruiting responsibilities, the job seems to be a great stepping stone for the coaches who have held it -- putting the last two occupants into the professional coaching ranks.
The three "official" assistant coaches remain the same this season, Baker Dunleavy (Associate Head Coach), Ashley Howard and Kyle Neptune. Jason Donnelly serves as a Special Assistant to the Head Coach as well, after moving out of one of the three official spots in a coaching shift a few years ago.