SOURCE: North Park University

North Park University

April 25, 2011 15:32 ET

Dylan Howard Named North Park University's Men's Basketball Coach

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwire - Apr 25, 2011) - After reviewing 139 applicants and interviewing five finalists in a national search, North Park University introduced Dylan Howard as its new head men's basketball coach this week.

Howard, who most recently served as an assistant men's basketball coach at NCAA Division I Mississippi Valley State University (MVSU) for the past three years, succeeds former head coach Paul Brenegan.

"This is a significant day in Viking athletics," stated North Park University director of athletics Dr. Jack Surridge. "We are thrilled that Coach Howard is joining our staff. He is a proven recruiter and program builder with a wide range of experience as a coach and player. We are confident that he will elevate the Viking men's basketball program."

"I am delighted that Coach Howard will be leading our men's basketball program. He clearly understands the North Park mission and vision and brings a great deal of successful experience to our team," said Dr. David Parkyn, North Park University President.

Howard, a native of Fort Wayne, Ind., brings a wide array of experience to the Viking program. Before serving as an assistant at MVSU, he headed the men's basketball program at Hardin-Simmons University (HSU), an NCAA Division III institution, in Abilene, Texas. During his tenure, he guided the Cowboys' program in 2005 to their first ever ASC tournament appearance and he was named ASC "Coach of the Year." His team earned the number two ranking in the NCAA South Region when they finished with a school record 19 wins, including 16 conference wins. In 2007 Hardin-Simmons reached the ASC tournament championship for the first time in school history. Among his other accomplishments at Hardin-Simmons, Howard had 23 players named to the Academic All-Conference team, 16 players voted to the All-West Division team. Howard's team GPA at HSU was 2.9 and his graduation rate as a head coach over seven years was 100 percent.

"North Park University has one of the richest Division III traditions in the nation with five national championships and I am thrilled to be part of the Viking family. My dream has always been to get back to the Midwest where the best basketball in nation is played, especially Chicago," said Howard.

Prior to his successful stint at Hardin-Simmons, Howard served as an assistant men's basketball coach at Robert Morris University, a NCAA Division I institution in a suburb of Pittsburgh, Pa., from 2000-01. There he was in charge of recruiting, post coaching, strength and conditioning and scheduling. In addition Howard had a successful stint as the head assistant coach at the University of St. Francis in Fort Wayne, Ind., where he helped turn the program from an eight-win team in 1997, to 31 wins in 2000 and a number one national ranking. Howard played for the University of Alabama-Birmingham under the legendary Gene Bartow where as the team captain; he led the Blazers to the 1989 NIT Final Four as well as the 1986 and 1987 NCAA tournaments. From there he went on to play professionally in the Asian Professional Basketball Association in Taipei, Taiwan where he was a two-time All-League selection. In 2010 Howard was inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame. Coach Howard and his wife Nicole have a daughter, Danielle Blanco, who attends Samford College and is currently ranked number two in the conference in the 400m hurdles.

North Park finished the 2010-11 season with an 11-14 overall record and a 4-10 mark in the conference (sixth place).

About North Park University
Located in Chicago, North Park University is a Christian comprehensive university that serves nearly 3,200 undergraduate and graduate students of all faiths and diverse multicultural backgrounds from around the country and the world. North Park offers a values-based education to students through more than 30 undergraduate majors and an adult degree-completion program, as well as graduate and continuing education in business, nonprofit management, nursing, education, music, and theology. By integrating faith with learning and service -- as it has done since its founding in 1891 by the Evangelical Covenant Church -- North Park University continues to focus on the important task of preparing students for lives of significance and service. More information is available at

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