LAKELAND--Southeastern University has officially named Roy (R-Jay) Barsh II their new men's basketball coach, as SEU Athletics Director Duane Aagaard announced the news, Friday afternoon, in a release posted on the Fire's athletic website.
Barsh has been the head assistant coach for Tacoma Community College the past four years. He is considered one of the top recruiters on the West Coast, and was even featured in The Bleacher Report for being a main catalyst for the Titans recruiting and developmental success.
“Coach Barsh has served for the past four years as the Head Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach at Tacoma Community College, one of the premier community college programs in the country," stated Aagaard. "He is a talented recruiter with contacts at all levels of basketball and from all corners of the country. He arrives with high praise for his passion, leadership, and innovation.”
In 2009, Barsh and the Titans made the Elite 8 in the NWAACC Tournament, and followed up that accomplishment with a perfect 16-0 record in the Western Region the following year. As the head assistant under Head Coach Carl Howell, the duo combined to average 25 wins a season with three Western Region titles the past four years.
Also, as the primary recruiter for the program, Barsh has pulled in some of the top junior college players in the country, including Mark McLaughlin, who led all community college players in scoring in 2011-12, averaging 28.4 points per game.
Prior to his tenure at TCC, he spent one season at Lincoln High School, in Seattle, where he helped guide the school to the State's Final Four and 26-5 record.
From 2005-2007, Barsh was an assistant coach at the University of Puget Sound. In his first season with the Loggers, the program finished with a 26-5 mark and a NCAA D-III Elite Eight appearance. He also graduated from the school in 2007 with a degree in communication and public rhetoric.
Before he began his coaching career, he enjoyed a successful playing career at Tacoma Community College from 2001-2003. In his first season, he led the Titans to a NWAACC title and a 30-3 overall record. In 2003, Barsh was named Second Team All-Conference and finds himself in rare company at the school, as he has won NWAACC titles as both a player (2002) and as a coach (2012).
Off of the hardwood, Barsh has always felt the call of God on his life, and has used basketball as the vehicle to deliver the Gospel of Jesus Christ. For over the past 10 years, he has been an integral part of Northwest Basketball Camps (NBC), which is a Christ-centered camp that utilizes basketball to impact the hearts and minds of young people through Jesus Christ. Through NBC, Barsh has led several camps around the world, including Italy, the United Kingdom, and Alaska. This summer he plans to lead a camp in Maui, with several NBA Stars scheduled to be in attendance.
He is also the founder of SkyMotivation, which is a ministry he uses to help young people grow in Christ. His website for the ministry has testimonies, devotionals, and even an area where viewers can ask questions about their faith.
Barsh and his wife, Christy, currently reside in Renton, Wash., and have a 14-year old son named Carson.
What People Are Saying
"I have had the opportunity to work with Coach Barsh, and there is no doubt he will lead the Southeastern basketball program well. He is a man of character, a leader, and a talented, passionate coach. I am excited to to see him continue, and build on, the past success the Fire has achieved. The university couldn't have found a better person for the job."--Ryan Carr, Director of Scouting for the Indiana Pacers.
“I am so happy for R-Jay and proud at the same time, I know he will do a great job leading the Fire. He is really a special guy, who has been like a son to me. Southeastern is the perfect fit for him from both a basketball and faith standpoint. He will be a great ambassador and role model for Southeastern. R-Jay’s ability to recruit, his work ethic and his ability to relate to his players will make an immediate impact on his program” --Carl Howell, Director of Athletics and Head Men's Basketball Coach, Tacoma Community College.
"R-Jay has been one of the most inspirational and dynamic leaders that I have had the pleasure to work with. He is a person who truly cares about the people he mentors and will go above and beyond any job description to help see his players exceed."--Richard Penton, CEO of SkyMovement.
"Having known R-Jay for over 15 years, I have had the opportunity to watch him develop into a loyal leader. His knowledge of the game and ability to recruit quality athletes are second to none. His experience as a coach and mentor have prepared him for a successful transition to the helm of his own program. Southeastern is getting someone who will run their program with integrity and passion."--Travis DeCuire, Men's Basketball Assistant Coach, University of California
"One of the most attractive qualities of R-Jay is his sensitivity to the Lord and spiritual depth. He is a man of deep convictions and will continue an incredible spiritual legacy inside the SEU Men’s Basketball program.” --Duane Aagaard, Director of Athletics, Southeastern University.