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Ritchie McKay Hires Soucie, Eaker and Cromwell To Coaching Staff
Headlining the hires is Soucie who joins McKay most recently from New Mexico. Soucie has been a part of McKay's coaching staff since 1995 when the two helped resurrect the program at Portland State, which had been dormant for 15 years.
"Everyday I have been a head coach, I have had Brad by my side," said McKay. "He has assisted not only in the development of the programs we have run, but he has made me a better man, a better coach and a better Christian. I am excited about our opportunity to continue to partner in this endeavor, especially at a place such as Liberty."
Soucie followed McKay from Portland State to Colorado State, Oregon State and New Mexico before coming to Liberty. At all previous stops, Soucie was the recruiting coordinator as well as an on-floor coach, a position he will mirror with the Flames.
"I have always had a great deal of respect for Liberty University," stated Soucie. "Jeff Meyer recruited me out of high school and now that I am here, I look forward to helping grow Liberty basketball."
Eaker is no stranger to Liberty basketball as he moves into an assistant coaching position after serving as the Flames' Director of Basketball Operations the past two seasons.
"I am very impressed with Jason Eaker and his passion for basketball and for Liberty University," commented McKay. "I think he is a great addition to our basketball program and I am excited about his future with us."
While at Liberty, Eaker served as an interim assistant coach during the summer of 2005 and the spring and summer of 2006. During that span, Eaker was active with 2005-06 spring individual skill instruction and spent a considerable amount of time on the road, recruiting in both the summer of 2005 and 2006. Prior to coming to Liberty, Eaker was a graduate assistant for Oklahoma's 2004-05 Big XII Championship team.
"First off I want to say thank you to Coach Dunton and the opportunity he gave me to come to Liberty two years ago," said Eaker. "I am also honored that Coach McKay has made my dream come true by making me a coach at this level, especially here at Liberty. For him to take a chance without knowing me is a debt I will always owe. I believe in our players and wanted the opportunity to continue my investment in them as they mature and do great things over the next several years. I look forward to being on Coach McKay's staff and have a peace that this is where the Lord wants me."
Rounding out the recent hiring is Cromwell who was named Director of Basketball Operations, filling the position vacated by Eaker's promotion.
Cromwell has spent the past two seasons with the Flames as a graduate assistant as he pursues a master's of arts in human relations.
"Tommy brings a lot of life and excitement in the job and program," said McKay. "I look forward to working with him while we build toward the future success of our program."
Cromwell, a Jacksonville, Fla. native, graduated in 2005 with a bachelor of arts in history from the Jacksonville University.
"This is a wonderful chance for me and I am extremely blessed to be a part of Coach McKay's staff," commented Cromwell. "This is a gracious opportunity Coach McKay has given to me and I look forward to being a part of the future of Liberty basketball."
One assistant coaching position remains left to fill on McKay's staff, which he hopes to fill in the near future.