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Penn State Basketball Coach Mike Rhoades Will Have Joe Crispin on 1st Staff

Joe Crispin and Titus Ivory during the magical run to the Sweet 16 in 2001.

Mike Rhoades’s first staff as Penn State men’s basketball coach will include program legend Joe Crispin.

247Sports’ Mark Brennan and the Athletic’s Matt Fortuna were the first to report that Rhoades will be bringing Crispin on as an assistant.

Crispin had previously been the head coach at Division III Rowan for seven seasons, going 114-54 and making it to three NCAA Tournaments.

This past season, Rowan finished 24-6 overall and made it to the DIII Sweet 16. Before becoming the head coach at Rowan, Crispin was an assistant there from 2014-16. But Penn State fans know him best for what he accomplished as a player.

Crispin is one of the best players in school history.

He played from 1997-2001 and is the fourth-leading scorer in program history more than 22 years after playing his last college game, finishing 14 points shy of 2,000. He’s also fourth all-time in made 3-pointers and fifth in assists.

Crispin’s last season with Penn State basketball was his biggest.

In the 2000-01 season, Crispin averaged 19.5 points and 3.3 assists per game, earning first-team All-Big Ten honors. That season is best remembered by Penn State fans for the team’s run to the Sweet 16, the last time the school has advanced that far. Crispin scored 21 points in seventh-seeded Penn State’s upset of second-seeded North Carolina in the Round of 32. Until this past March, that was Penn State’s most recent NCAA Tournament win.

Crispin’s younger brother, Jon, played at Penn State with him for two seasons. Jon ended up transferring to UCLA, where he played his last two years.

This is a feel-good story for Penn State fans, and also a significant move that takes away the sting of Adam Fisher’s departure. The former Penn State associate head coach accepted the head coaching job at Temple the same day Penn State officially hired Rhoades.

NSN communicated with Jon Crispin, now a college basketball analyst at ESPN, via text.

Jon Crispin is excited for what Penn State’s offense could look like with Joe Crispin on the staff.

“This is a big add from a scoring and style standpoint,” Jon Crispin told NSN. “They want to be different. Brother Joe will certainly be a big part of that.

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