Roland Houston joined the Colonials' coaching staff prior to the 2004-05 season as an assistant coach and was promoted to the position of Associate Head Coach in August, 2010. Houston came to GW after having served as an associate head coach and assistant coach during his tenure at La Salle University (1999-04).
Houston's reputation as a respected big man coach is widely known throughout Philadelphia and the East Coast. One of the reasons Karl Hobbs hired Houston was to help develop and re-emphasize the improvement of GW's inside players.
"Roland's been an incredible addition to our staff," Hobbs said. "Not only is he a great evaluator of talent and recruiter, his development of our big men has been second to none. He is truly one of the best big-man coaches in the country."
Houston played a critical role in the development of several successful student-athletes including Rasual Butler, currently of the Los Angeles Clippers.
When asked about his college coach, Rasual stated, "Coach Houston understands what it takes for young guys to make it to the next level. He's a hard worker and a really genuine person. He definitely helped me with my big-man skills. I wasn't a very good rebounder until Coach Houston got there and, once he got there, my rebounding went up tremendously. He taught me some techniques and skills that I still use to this day."
Houston is a Philadelphia native who began his basketball career as an All-City Selection and Honorable Mention All-American at Martin Luther King High School. From Philadelphia, Houston went on to a prosperous career at the University of Rhode Island. At URI, Houston was a four-year letter winner and three-year starter for the Rams (1979-82). Houston captained the team as a senior. He played for the legendary Jack Kraft where they posted a 20-9 record his freshman year concluding with a triple-overtime loss to Maryland in the NIT. During his sophomore season, URI posted a 21-8 record and earned a NIT bid under coach Claude English. Houston played in 105 career games at URI and averaged 12.8 points and 10 rebounds a game as a senior. The Rams were ranked among the top 20 teams in the nation during two of Houston's four seasons at URI.
"When coach Houston came to GW, I knew that he would be a great asset to this program," former Colonial Pops Mensah-Bonsu said. "He taught me a lot of different things that helped me improve not only my game, but also the way I go about my everyday life. When he joined the program I saw a vast improvement to the way I played basketball, which helped both the team and my confidence. Coach Houston is a great teacher of life and I just wish I could've played under his tutelage for a couple more years, he has been a great coach and an even better mentor."
Houston received his bachelor's degree in communications from URI in 1982. After college, Houston played professionally overseas for 13 seasons for teams in France, Spain, Israel and Argentina where he was a member of the national championship team. While playing in France, Houston studied French at the Universite' de Nice.
Houston's responsibilities at GW include recruiting and working with the Colonials' post players as well as game and practice preparation. During his first season at GW, Houston played an integral part in the Colonial's becoming two-time Atlantic-10 Champions, two-time Atlantic-10 Tournament Champions and securing three NCAA bids.
Houston, who is proficient in French and Spanish, resides in Alexandria with his wife, Lisa, and daughter Zuri, 13.
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