Associate men's basketball head coach Mike Magpayo will lead the Highlanders following the announcement that head coach David Patrick accepted the associate head Men's Basketball coaching position at the University of Arkansas, a move that provides Patrick with a return to the SEC and the opportunity to be closer to family in the South.
"I am proud to have served as the UC Riverside head men's basketball coach for the past two years," Patrick said after the July 1 announcement. "This decision was an extremely difficult one for my family and I, but we could not turn down an incredible opportunity to work for Coach Musselman at the University of Arkansas."
The Division I Arkansas Razorbacks were 20-12 in the 2019-20 season, and 7-11 in the NCAA's Southeastern Conference. Head Coach Eric Musselman and Patrick worked together previous at Louisiana State University, where they helped the Tigers reach the 2015 NCAA Tournament.
"The Riverside community and the Highlander program are so important to me and I am thrilled that Mike Magpayo will have an opportunity to lead the way forward," Patrick said. "I have no doubt about the way Mike and the staff will represent this program."
"We are thankful for Coach Patrick and the work he and our staff have done to turn our Men's Basketball program around," said Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Tamica Smith Jones. "He and his team have provided a solid foundation for where we want to take this program and by all accounts, we are ahead of schedule. We wish Coach Patrick and his family all the best at Arkansas and I am fully confident Coach Magpayo will keep this team on the upward trajectory it is on."
Magpayo was the defensive coordinator and architect of the UC Riverside defense that finished in top-10 nationally and tied the program's Division I record for wins, with 17 in the 2019-20 season. He was also named one of Silver Waves Media's "Top 50 Most Impactful Low Major Coaches." Last month, Magpayo was promoted to associate head coach.
"I am honored, humbled, and absolutely thrilled for the opportunity to lead our University of California Riverside Men's Basketball program into the future," Magpayo said. "I want to thank AD Tamica Smith Jones and Chancellor Kim Wilcox for this incredible opportunity. Most of all, I am eternally grateful to Coach David Patrick, a true leader, a role model like no other, and a friend."
"Over the last two years, Coach Patrick rapidly built a winning program here at UC Riverside," Magpayo said. "We operate with a high-performance mindset and Coach Patrick and our staff have recruited an elite group of student-athletes. Leading our program is special and doing so in my home area of Southern California is truly special. Along with my wife Caroline, who is an alum of UCR, we have established roots here and we absolutely love the city of Riverside. We look forward to building and keeping the momentum into this next year and beyond. Go Highlanders!"
In UC Riverside's ground-breaking fashion, Magpayo is the first Division I head men's basketball coach of Asian descent. He is also the founder and president of the Asian Coaches Association, a unified organization of networking, support, and development for Asian coaches and coaches worldwide.
Prior to his time at UC Riverside, Magpayo spent a season at University of San Francisco, going 22-7, picking up wins over ranked teams like Nevada and St. Mary's, and advancing to the finals of the CBI Championship. Magpayo also spent time at Campbell University. In his last season with the Camels, he was able to help put together one of the best seasons in school history, as the team was able to advance to the conference championship game as well as the CIT quarterfinals in the program's first postseason appearance in nearly 25 years. He got his start in the Ivy League at Columbia serving in multiple capacities during the most successful run in program history from 2010-14.
The existing staff is expected to remain in the Inland Empire and build on the foundation established under Patrick's leadership.
Coach Magpayo is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara and his wife, Caroline, is a UCR alumna.