August 11, 2014
Australian Michael Clarke has been named the assistant men’s basketball coach at MacMurray College.
Clarke was previously the video intern at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) during the 2013-14 season, and served under the direction of the Ram’s head coach Shaka Smart.
“His recent work, with Coach Shaka Smart's program at Virginia Commonwealth University, has exposed him to one of the premier pressure defensive teams in the country and their fast-paced, aggressive, transition offense,” MacMurray Head Men’s Basketball Coach Todd Creal said. “We are looking forward to having a coach of his experience and integrity coming to join our basketball family.”
Clarke was an All-State basketball player in high school his junior year and toured the state of Oregon with the Western Australian All-Stars. As a senior, he captained his high school team to the Final Four of the state tournament. Clarke also played collegiate basketball at Murdoch University, including games at the Australian National Tournament in 1992.
For several years, Clarke has coached representative and semi-professional basketball teams in the elite leagues of Perth. Most recently, as head coach of the under-20 Men’s Eastern Suns, Clarke guided the team to the championship game in 2012, winning two-thirds of their games. The team was known for its up-tempo style of play, scoring at an average of 94 points per game.
"We are very fortunate to get a coach of Mike's extensive background,” said Highlander Head Coach Creal. “His work with several basketball organizations in his home country of Australia will give us exposure to new ideas and concepts.
Clarke is completing his master’s degree in sport leadership from VCU in Richmond, VA. A native of Perth, Australia, Clarke has a bachelor’s of law degree, a bachelor’s of commerce, and a graduate certificate in forensic science from Murdoch University in Perth. He also has a graduate diploma in military law from the University of Melbourne.
“I am thankful for the opportunity to join MacMurray College and work with Coach Creal,” said Clarke. “He has built a strong program, and I am eager to add value to the team and help the players reach their potential.
Clarke will begin his coaching responsibilities at MacMurray College on August 21.