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October 24, 2008

State 4AAAA Coach of the Year, Hall of Fame Member Accepts Anoka-Ramsey Men’s Basketball Head Coach Position

With new coaches, 10 new players and five returning players, the Anoka-Ramsey Community College men's basketball program begins the 2008-2009 with a fresh approach. The public is invited to cheer on the Golden Rams as they kick off the new season Nov. 14 at 8 p.m. in the gymnasium of the Coon Rapids Campus.

Mens basketball coaches
The mens basketball coaches at Anoka-Ramsey Community College gear up for the upcoming season. Pictured from left are Ron Larson, Rory Larson and Ben Seevers. Their first home game is Nov. 14 at 8 p.m.

Introducing New Coaching Staff
Head Coach Ron Larson is new to Anoka-Ramsey Community College, but not new to the community or to basketball coaching. At the close of the 2008 season, Larson completed 28 years as the boys basketball head coach and 18 years as athletic director - a position he continues to hold - at St. Francis High School. Previously he served as head coach at Underwood High School, Braham High School, Fergus Falls High School, and assistant coach for St. Cloud State University. Highlights of his 36-year career include 473 wins, three trips to the State High School Tournament, being named Section Coach of the Year four times, and the 2008 State 4AAAA Coach of the Year. Larson was inducted into the Minnesota Basketball Hall of Fame in 2004.

"My staff and I look forward to the challenge of making Anoka-Ramsey a high profile and premier college basketball program for young men in the Metro and surrounding area," says Larson. "We will stress academics, accountability and attitude and guarantee our student-athletes will play hard."

Larson's assistant coaches include Rory Larson, one of Larson's three sons and former players from St. Francis High School and Southwest Minnesota State University (SMSU). Rory was a student athlete at SMSU who earned a bachelor's degree in sociology and justice administration while playing for the men's basketball team. He was captain of 2003-2004 team, and completed his career as the sixth all-time high in three-point field goals in SMSU’s history. Rory also earned a master's degree in Education: Sports Leadership from SMSU.

Rory chose to make coaching his career, and spent last season as the assistant men's basketball coach for the University of Minnesota-Morris. Morris finished second-place in the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference. Rory also accepted the Interim Aspire Coordinator at the Cambridge Campus of Anoka-Ramsey Community College.

Ben Seevers is another assistant coach whose love for the game led him to a second year at Anoka-Ramsey Community College. He is a former player and volunteer assistant coach from Central Lakes College in Brainerd, Minn. Ben has also extensively participated in the AAU youth basketball organization, the Minnesota Comets. Seever's love for the game has led him to pursue a coaching career. Ben earned his associate's degree from Central Lakes College and a bachelor's in visual arts from St. Cloud State University.

Behind the leadership of the five returners, the 2008-2009 Golden Rams look to make a strong showing in the Minnesota College Athletic Conference.

"We have a number of exceptional athletes between our returners and the new players," says head coach Larson. "The key is going to be getting everyone on the same page, building chemistry, and getting our guys to peak at the right time."

With so many new faces the coaches know that building chemistry on and off the court is going to take time. Ten newcomers fill out the roster so many will be expected to contribute right from the start.

"Ideally we would like more balance in terms of new players and returners," explains Larson. "Lacking that, we're going to need some of the first year players, and transfers, to mature quickly and perform consistently both offensively and defensively."

The coaching staff fully expects to contend for a spot in the conference tournament, something that has eluded the Golden Rams in recent years.

"Everything is geared toward making the conference tournament at the end of the season. That's our goal and with the talent we have it's something we feel is attainable," says Larson. "We aspire to make Anoka-Ramsey men's basketball competitive in our league in striving for local, state and national recognition and championships. This will take time but we are committed to the process. Our staff will also work towards making a difference in young men's lives as they work towards a two-year degree and then a four-year degree."

Don't miss out on seeing this year's team in action! See more information about Anoka-Ramsey Community College athletic programs, or call 763-433-1360.

Home Game Schedule - All Home Games are held at the Coon Rapids Campus Gymnasium

11/14 Fond du Lac, 8 p.m.
11/15 Bethel JV, 3 p.m.
11/29 Madison Area Tech, 3 p.m.
12/10 St. John's, 7 p.m.
12/12 Vermillion, 8 p.m.
12/13 Mesabi Range, 3 p.m.
1/7 Minnesota West, 8 p.m.
1/14 Ridgewater, 8 p.m.
1/28 Minneapolis, 8 p.m.
2/4 Rochester, 8 p.m.
2/14 Riverland 3 p.m.
2/18 Fergus Falls, 8 p.m.