Daytona Beach, Fla. (May 25, 2017) – After receiving more than 200 applications, Daytona State College has selected Erik Pastrana as the Falcon's new head men's basketball coach. Pastrana, who spent the last year as an assistant coach at Florida International University, brings a decade of experience as an assistant in both NJCAA and NCAA play to his first head coaching position.
"Erik comes to us with an excellent track record, valuable postseason experience and the kind of leadership we want to impart on our student-athletes," said Tom LoBasso, president of Daytona State. "We have set a high bar for academic and athletic performance at Daytona State and we think Erik will be a great asset to advancing our men's basketball program in both areas."
"I am beyond excited to join Daytona State and help build on an already great reputation of academics and athletics," said Pastrana. "I have always considered Daytona State one of the premier jobs in not only the state of Florida, but the country as well."
Prior to joining the FIU staff in 2016, Pastrana spent three years as an assistant coach under Brad Underwood, a former Falcons' head coach from 2003-06, at Stephen F. Austin University in Texas. During Pastrana's tenure, the Lumberjacks won three Southland Conference Tournament Championships, earned two major victories in the NCAA Tournament and posted an overall record of 89-14, 53-1 in conference play over three years. He also coached three consecutive conference players of the year for the Lumberjacks.
"When you find someone with Erik's experience who has roots tied to our own talented coaching tree, you know you're getting a quality coach who's not only going to be a great leader on the court, but who will really bring the best out of our student-athletes in the classroom as well," said Will Dunne, Daytona State's athletic director.
Pastrana started his career as a graduate assistant under Frank Martin at Kansas State from 2007-09. In his first season with K-State, the Wildcats finished third in the Big 12 with a 21-12 record, notched their first NCAA Tournament win since 1988 and saw freshman Michael Beasley selected No. 2 in the NBA draft. Kansas State posted another 20-win season during Pastrana's second year, earning an at-large bid to the NIT.
Following his experience with the Wildcats, Pastrana worked as an assistant coach for Labette Community College in Parsons, Kansas, and Northwest Florida State in Niceville, Florida. Pastrana helped lead the NWFSC Raiders to a NJCAA national runner-up finish and produced a team with 10 future Division I signees including the 2013 NJCAA Player of the Year Chris Jones and NCAA All-American Elgin Cook.
Outside of his collegiate experience, Pastrana has also coached two highly respected AAU programs, the Florida Rams and KC Run GMC. A native of Miami, Florida, Pastrana holds a master's degree in Counseling and Student Development from Kansas State and a Bachelors in History from Florida State University.
Pastrana joins a growing Falcon athletics program that boasts 161 student-athletes with 121 athletic scholarships in eight varsity sports including men's and women's basketball, men's and women's soccer, women's golf, fast-pitch softball, baseball and volleyball. DSC offers an all-around sports complex, including the L. Gale Lemerand Health, Wellness and Community Education Center, an indoor pool, two top-notch playing fields and a field house.
Daytona State carries a winning tradition in both competition and academics. Falcon teams consistently earn state and national recognition for their academic achievements. Over 90 percent of DSC student-athlete graduates transfer to a university with full or partial athletic scholarships.
What other coaches are saying about the hire:
"Erik is a tremendous individual with a great passion for helping young people. He is a great coach and has been very successful at all his stops. A tireless worker and recruiter, Erik will achieve great things at such a wonderful place. He is a wonderful basketball mind and was an integral part of our NCAA success at Stephen F. Austin. What a great hire by Daytona State, a proven winner."
- Brad Underwood, current head coach at the University of Illinois, former head coach of Stephen F. Austin University and Daytona State College
"Erik is a tireless worker who has earned his way to success. He has coached in high school, junior college and NCAA division I, so he has developed contacts at all levels. He also has great balance, which allows him to build strong player relationships."
- Frank Martin, current head coach for the University of South Carolina, former head coach at Kansas State University
"Erik is a rising star in college basketball. He played a key role in our run to the National Championship Game at Northwest Florida in 2013. He can coach, he can recruit, and he is a terrific leader of young men. Daytona State hit a home run hiring him. He will lead the program to prominence on the state and national level."
- Steve Forbes, current head coach at East Tennessee State, former head coach of Northwest Florida State College