Phil Martelli

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Phil Martelli
Phil Martelli in 2016.jpg
Biographical details
Born (1954-08-31) August 31, 1954 (age 64)
Playing career
Position(s)Point guard
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1977–1978Widener (assistant)
1978–1985Bishop Kenrick HS
1985–1995Saint Joseph's (assistant)
1995–2019Saint Joseph's
Head coaching record
Overall425–303 (college)
Tournaments7–7 (NCAA Division I)
10–6 (NIT)
Accomplishments and honors
3 Atlantic 10 Tournament (1997, 2014, 2016)
4 Atlantic 10 regular season (1997, 2001, 2004, 2005)
AP Coach of the Year (2004)
Naismith Coach of the Year (2004)
Henry Iba Award (2004)
Jim Phelan Award (2004)
Adolph Rupp Cup (2004)
NABC Coach of the Year co-winner (2004)
Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year (1997, 2001, 2004, 2005)

Philip Martelli Sr. (born August 31, 1954) is an American college basketball coach and the former coach of the Saint Joseph's Hawks men's basketball team. He led Saint Joseph's to seven NCAA Tournaments and six NITs in 24 seasons as head coach.[1]

Playing career[edit]

Martelli was a point guard for Widener University. As point guard, he was part of the NCAA Division III Tournament teams in 1974-75 and 1975–76, and set the school's single season and career assist marks.[2]

Career at Saint Joseph's[edit]

Martelli began his career on Hawk Hill with SJU's 1985-86 NCAA Tournament team. In his decade as an assistant, he was part of the Hawks' NIT teams in 1992-93 and 1994-95. After 10 years as an assistant under Jim Boyle and John Griffin, Martelli was named the 14th coach in school history on July 20, 1995, and just the third non-alumnus to coach the school.

In his first season as head coach (1995–96) his team reached the final game of the NIT Tournament. In his second year, under the floor generalship of Junior point guard Rashid Bey, and help from Arthur "Yah" Davis and Dmitri Domani, Martelli's Hawks captured the Atlantic 10 crown and made it into the Sweet Sixteen round of the NCAA tournament.

They would not duplicate that success until landing future Naismith College Player of the Year Jameer Nelson and former NBA players Delonte West and Dwayne Jones. With Nelson as point guard, Martelli led the 2003-04 Hawks to the greatest season in school history. The Hawks went 27-0 regular season. The Hawks lost to Xavier in the Atlantic 10 Tournament, and reached the Elite Eight, ultimately losing to Oklahoma State to finish with a record of 30-2. This is "officially" the deepest run that St. Joseph's has ever made in the tournament; the 1960-61 team went all the way to the Final Four and won the third-place game, but that run was scrubbed from the books due to a gambling scandal. That year, Martelli was named Naismith College Coach of the Year.[3]

In 2004-05, Martelli led the Hawks back to the final game of the NIT, where they lost to South Carolina. During the season, Martelli won his 235th game on Hawk Hill, passing Hall of Famer Jack Ramsay as the winningest coach in school history.

In 2005-06, the Hawks returned to the NIT, eventually losing to Hofstra University. In 2008, Martelli led Saint Joseph's to its first NCAA Tournament since 2004 with a team led by Pat Calathes and Ahmad Nivins. In 2014, the Hawks returned to the NCAA Tournament after winning their second Atlantic 10 Championship under Martelli, led by Langston Galloway, Ronald Roberts and Halil Kanacević. The Hawks went on to lose in overtime to the eventual 2013-14 National Champion Connecticut Huskies in the Second Round of the Tournament.

In 2007, Phil Martelli's first book Don't Call Me Coach: A Lesson Plan For Life was published.[4] Students at SJU often say "In Martelli We Trust" about their beloved basketball coach. Martelli has a weekly show during the basketball season called Hawk Talk which discusses the standing of the university and the basketball team.

In October 2008, Martelli signed a contract extension at St. Joe's through the 2015-16 season.[5] Martelli also surpassed Hawk legend Dr. Jack Ramsay for second among SJU coaches in wins 2008. Martelli has won the most postseason games of any Hawk coach and his teams.

In December 2011, Martelli was referenced in an article on in which former player Todd O'Brien detailed his side of a story about his former coach holding a grudge. O'Brien had applied for a graduate student waiver, where he was allowed to transfer to pursue a post graduate degree in a field not offered by their original institution, but SJU would not release him to play. The NCAA denied O'Brien's appeal and SJU was legally unable to comment on the details of the case.[6] Martelli refused to honor O'Brien's request and kept him in his contract for undisclosed reasons. Martelli was characterized by most reporters as being unreasonable about this for holding a grudge against O'Brien.[7]

With a win against Morgan State in 2011, Martelli became the all-time winningest coach in Saint Joseph's history with his 310th victory.

Martelli has also lost more games than any coach in Saint Joseph's history, eclipsing Bill Ferguson's 208 losses in 25 seasons. Martelli has lost 241 games in 18+ seasons at Saint Joseph's as of December 8, 2013.[8]

In December 2013, after two disappointing losses to Big 5 Rivals Temple and Villanova several alumni launched a Petition to fire Phil Martelli due to what many consider to be several seasons of mediocre play and a failure to meet expectation.[9] The website contained a letter to Phil Martelli applauding his achievements and his representation of the university, but imploring him to resign.[10]

This website quickly lost credibility when the majority of "signers" were anonymous and worse when the signatures of some well-known long-term SJU supporters were forged onto the site that had no system in place to verify the identity of the signer.

The site was taken down after Saint Joseph's won the 2014 Atlantic 10 Championship with the season's second victory over VCU.

Saint Joe's announced October 29, 2015 that Martelli received another contract extension (though the terms of the deal were not immediately released).[11] On March 13, 2016, Martelli claimed his second A-10 title in 3 years as the Hawks defeated VCU 87-74 in the 2016 Atlantic 10 Championship.

On March 19, 2019, Director of Athletics Jill Bodensteiner announced that the university had let go of Martelli, ending his 24 year tenure as head coach.[12]

Coaching tree[edit]

Numerous assistants of Martelli have gone on to become coaches at other programs.

Players coached by Martelli who were drafted and/or played in the NBA[edit]

Head coaching record[edit]

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Saint Joseph's Hawks (Atlantic 10 Conference) (1995–2019)
1995–96 Saint Joseph's 19–13 9–7 3rd NIT Runner-up
1996–97 Saint Joseph's 26–7 13–3 1st NCAA Division I Sweet 16
1997–98 Saint Joseph's 11–17 3–13 5th (East)
1998–99 Saint Joseph's 12–18 5–11 5th (East)
1999–00 Saint Joseph's 13–16 7–9 4th (East)
2000–01 Saint Joseph's 26–7 14–2 1st (East) NCAA Division I Round of 32
2001–02 Saint Joseph's 19–12 12–4 1st (East) NIT Second Round
2002–03 Saint Joseph's 23–7 12–4 1st (East) NCAA Division I Round of 64
2003–04 Saint Joseph's 30–2 16–0 1st (East) NCAA Division I Elite Eight
2004–05 Saint Joseph's 24–12 14–2 1st NIT Runner-up
2005–06 Saint Joseph's 19–14 9–7 5th NIT Second Round
2006–07 Saint Joseph's 18–14 9–7 6th
2007–08 Saint Joseph's 21–13 9–7 5th NCAA Division I Round of 64
2008–09 Saint Joseph's 17–15 9–7 5th
2009–10 Saint Joseph's 11–20 5–11 T–11th
2010–11 Saint Joseph's 11–22 4–12 12th
2011–12 Saint Joseph's 20–14 9–7 5th NIT First Round
2012–13 Saint Joseph's 18–14 8–8 T–8th NIT First Round
2013–14 Saint Joseph's 24–10 11–5 T–3rd NCAA Division I Round of 64
2014–15 Saint Joseph's 13–18 7–11 10th
2015–16 Saint Joseph's 28–8 13–5 4th NCAA Division I Round of 32
2016–17 Saint Joseph's 11–20 4–14 T–12th
2017–18 Saint Joseph's 16–16 10–8 4th
2018–19 Saint Joseph's 14–19 6–12 T–10th
Saint Joseph's: 444–328 (.575) 218–175 (.555)
Total: 444–328 (.575)

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion

Career highlights[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^,
  9. ^ Archived 2013-12-14 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-12-14. Retrieved 2013-12-09.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  11. ^
  12. ^ Mike Jensen (2018-03-19). "Phil Martelli fired by St. Joseph's after 24 years as head coach". Retrieved 2019-03-19.

External links[edit]