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Men's basketball announces addition of new assistant coach and promotion of Billmeier

Seton Hall Athletics announced on Thursday that Donald Copeland, a former Seton Hall men’s basketball player, is returning to the team as an assistant coach. 

Copeland spent the last six years of his coaching career with Wagner, first joining the Seahawks as a graduate assistant before taking up the role of assistant coach for the last four years. In his first season as an assistant coach, he helped bring the team to a 23-11 record and one of three Northeast Conference regular season championships during his tenure with Wagner. Donald Copeland compiled a record of 64-44 with the Seahawks.

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Copeland’s college basketball career began in 2002 at Seton Hall, where he played for four seasons with the Pirates while and helped the team earn two NCAA tournament bids in his sophomore and senior seasons. He graduated from Seton Hall in 2006 with a degree in communications and media studies before embarking on a professional basketball career overseas for nearly a decade. During Copeland’s career, he won two professional championships while playing Puerto Rico in 2011 and 2015. 

“We are thrilled to bring Donald back home to Seton Hall, where he had so many great memories,” Willard said. “Donald’s a terrific coach, and his work ethic and deep knowledge of the basketball scene here in the state of New Jersey will help us continue to identify, recruit and develop the area’s talented players.”

In addition to the hiring of Donald Copeland, assistant coach Grant Billmeier was promoted to associate head coach after spending the last six years as an assistant coach.

“Grant has been an integral member of our staff and the success we have been able to achieve here at Seton Hall,” Willard said. “The passion and energy he brings to work every single day is infectious, and he works very hard to ensure that our players get better on the court, in the classroom and in life. Our program would not be where it is today without Grant’s dedication, and he’s earned this promotion to associate head coach.”

Billmeier and Copeland were teammates during their playing careers at Seton Hall and are bound to continue that connection for future Big East and NCAA Championship runs. 

The men's basketball team's first game is scheduled for November 16 at the University of Michigan for the Gavitt Tipoff Games. It will be the first time these programs have played each since 1989 and just the second-ever meeting since Michigan defeated Seton Hall in the 1989 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament by a single point.

Thomas Donnelly can be reached at thomas.donnelly@student.shu.edu.

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