For the past 40 years, Jim Quinn was the face of Chaminade basketball. But with the legendary head coach announcing his retirement, a new face will patrol the Flyers sidelines in 2012-13.
Enter Bob Paul.
Paul, flanked by Quinn and long-time Chaminade athletic director Don Scarola, was announced Friday night as the new head coach of the Chaminade basketball team on MSG Varsity’s "High School SportsDesk."
Paul, a 1992 Chaminade graduate, rejoins the team he coached as Quinn's assistant from 2000-2008. Paul also worked as an assistant coach at C.W. Post from 2006-10 and most recently served as director of basketball operations at Iona College.
“This is a guy that I’ve looked up to as a young kid at Chaminade to a young coach," said Paul of Quinn. "He’s someone who was a mentor to me . . . Now I’m being asked to roam the same sidelines as him.”
Paul admitted to a few nerves upon accepting the role but is confident to follow in Quinn’s footsteps.
“It’s humbling and exciting. There’s a little nervous energy because I want to do well,” Paul stated. “I feel like at Chaminade, it’s a place where you’re set up to be successful.”
Paul believes he can take valuable lessons from his time in the college ranks and apply them to his alma mater.
“Over time I’ve matured a lot to deal with the adversity you face when coaching kids,” Paul said. “I’m also able to teach kids that winning and losing is all part of the game, but life goes on.
“I think that’s the biggest thing I’ve learned, that there are plenty of peaks and valleys, but life moves on and you have to be able to move on past that.”
Iona College head basketball coach Tim Cluess, whom Paul worked with at both CW Post and Iona had high praise for the new Chaminade boss.
"Bob Paul is a terrific coach with a great work ethic who is passionate about basketball. He will bring experience, knowledge and dedication to the Chaminade basketball program," Cluess said. "Bob will hold his student athletes to a high standard both on and off the court which will result in success for their program."
Quinn retired at the end of the 2012 basketball season after 25 years as the head coach of Chaminade’s varsity basketball team that followed 15 years coaching the JV. His 426 wins rank him eighth all-time among coaches on Long Island.
So what made him feel like this would be the end?
“It was a nice milestone with it being 40 years,” Quinn said. “It’s bittersweet, but I’m also going to look forward to retirement down in Florida.”
Scarola said the school had been preparing for Quinn's decision for well over a year.
“I knew down the road that it was going to happen sooner or later,” Scarola said. “During the time we were trying to envision who would be his successor.
“We found out with Coach Paul that some things had changed in his world and his coaching status, and he wanted to know if he could be considered. The timing is wonderful.”
Quinn gave his vote of confidence to the hiring, which was all Scarola needed to anoint Paul the new boss.
"I’ve yet to see anybody with more passion than Bobby has for the game of basketball," Quinn said. "And with that alone I believe Bobby will be successful.”