Introduction to a New Basketball Season, a New Coach, and a New Hope


Ryan Rodriguez

The Manville Boy’s Basketball team had tryouts on November 22nd and had their first practice of the season on Monday, November 29, 2021. Along with the new season, they also got a new coach, Coach William Rooney. This is Coach Rooney’s 9th year coaching Basketball and teaching Physical Education and Health. He began at Cedar Hill Prep for 4 years and then moved to Immaculata High School where he taught P.E. and coached not only Boy’s Basketball but also Freshman Girl’s Basketball. He also is a coach and director for the New Jersey Panthers, an AAU team based out of Central Jersey. Coach Rooney stated, “I definitely learned a lot coaching at Immaculata and for the New Jersey Panthers. I was able to work with some of the best coaches in the state of New Jersey. Coach Shellhammer (Mount St. Marys), Coach Mckeever (Immaculata), Coach R.Liu (Watchung Hills), and Coach Z.Liu (NJ Panthers) are just a few I have been blessed to work with. Each one of these coaches, and many others, have helped prepare me for this great opportunity.”

From his experience, Coach Rooney not only brings Manville a Physical Education teacher, but also being an Assistant Varsity Boy’s Soccer Coach, and Head Varsity Boy’s Basketball. Coach Rooney expressed, “I will bring my knowledge, passion, and energy in everything I do. I will motivate my players to become the greatest version of themselves. We will focus on skill development and increasing basketball IQ. Everything I do will be for the student-athletes and their development. Everything will be WE > ME.” He then later explains that his expectations for the student-athletes are simple, he states, “It is called E.A.T. These are non-negotiable and all 3 take zero skill. Everyone must play with Effort. In order to succeed, every player must try their best. Every player must have a positive Attitude. They must have a “next play” mentality. Every player must play with Toughness and be the hardest worker in the gym.” Coach Rooney brings his passion, organization, and love for the game of basketball but also for the development of young adults. He believes what helped him the most was the fact that he went from being a volunteer coach to coaching one of the fastest and most successful growing AAU programs in the tri-state. He will lead by example, hold his players accountable and be a great role model. His first impression of Manville when school first started was “different.” He had to get used to seeing kids wear what they want and not be in a specific uniform since he hasn’t been to a public school in a while. He then shared, “Other than that, all the kids here are super nice and respectful and all the Staff and Administration have been helpful and welcoming. I am looking forward to a great rest of the year.”
Manville High School is looking forward to what Coach Rooney brings to the table and wants to see not only him succeed, but Manville as a whole. Coach Rooney wants to communicate that, “There is more to basketball than just winning and losing. I am dedicated to giving every ounce of energy, time, and preparation in helping the growth and development of the entire student-athlete. This includes the mind, body, and soul in addition to increasing their basketball skills and IQ. I believe there are numerous life lessons that can be learned from the game of basketball. It is my job to lead these student-athletes by example and push them to become the greatest version of themselves.