After several years as an assistant coach at storied programs such as the University of Georgia and most recently, the University of Louisville, Cameron Newbauer has finally found a team to call his own at Belmont.
“This is a dream come true,” said an emotional Newbauer.
Newbauer’s hire comes nearly three weeks after former coach Brittney Ezell resigned to take a head coaching position at ETSU.
“What I’ve heard throughout the interview process, this is just an outstanding young man ready to be a head coach. The two words that came through time after time, tireless and passionate,” said athletic director Mike Strickland, “Passionate about basketball, passionate about people. All those things came together and looked like a perfect package for us.”
Senior Molly Ernst is eager for the opportunity to finish her career at Belmont under “Coach Cam.”
“It’s clear talking to him in a moment, the first few words that he cares about us. He’s got a tremendous record coaching with Andy Landers and Jeff Walls, he’s going to bring so much experience and is going to re-energize this program and I’m really excited.”
Along with a proven track record, Newbauer brings a contagious enthusiasm, which he credits to a strong returning squad led by Ernst.
“I’m excited about this year’s team because we have a great core of players coming back. It’s refreshing to hear the excitement in their voice… it’s contagious. I can’t wait for their athletes to get back and start building our family.”
In the meantime, Newbauer is looking forward to building relationships within Belmont’s community, acknowledging the path set before him by Strickland, Belmont women’s basketball founder Betty Wiseman, and current men’s coach Rick Byrd.
“I don’t know if everyone here understands he’s one of the top eight winningest coaches in the history of the game. To have him right next door to my office in incredible,” Newbauer said. “I apologize ahead of time, but I’m going to be knocking early and often, so I’m sorry but it’s going to happen.”
Newbauer points out that the team is going to make a conscientious effort to control their attitude about appreciating the opportunity given to be at Belmont as well as their effort on the court. He aims to recruit players of high character that are not only skilled on the court but the classroom as well.
“I take a lot of pride in helping young people understand they’re born to be great, and try to help them learn how to get there, and push those buttons, and navigating the way for them– to use basketball as that platform is unbelievably exciting for me,” said Newbauer.
That platform and pride bodes well for the future of the program, according to Strickland.
“I’m very excited about where he’s going to take our women’s basketball program relatively quickly and I’m looking forward to a nice run with Cameron,” he said.