The Detroit Mercy athletic department added two new members this past week. Ernie Zeigler will be the newest assistant for the men’s basketball team. Zeigler, who was head coach of at Central Michigan, will be replacing Carlos Briggs and Derek Thomas (we all know what happened with that lawsuit pending) on the staff. It will be interesting to see if head coach Ray will hire another assistant as well. Here is what Zeigler had to say about joining the Detroit Mercy staff.
“I’m truly blessed and privileged to have the opportunity to work with coach McCallum and the Detroit staff,” stated Zeigler. “Coach McCallum and I go way back and there is nothing better than to work with one of your friends, especially one you have the utmost respect for. Basketball has brought me back home, I’m excited to be here and join the Titan family.”
Too bad Zeigler’s son Trey, who has played at Central for his dad and then transferred to the University of Pittsburgh, will now play at Texas Christian University. Ernie Zeigler is a good fit to the staff because he is from Detroit and I’m sure that he still has plenty of connections in the area as far as recruiting goes. Sidenote: Zeigler went to school at Schoolcraft College a year after Briggs left back in the 80’s.
The university also needed a new athletic director and decided to hire Robert Vowels. Vowels, who was the NCAA Vice President of Membership and Student-Athlete Affairs,takes over for Interim director Jason Horn. Not exactly sure what that means for Horn, don’t know if he will stay on in the department or not. However, here is what University President Antoine Garibaldi had to say about the hiring of Vowels.
“Robert Vowels has a tremendous amount of intercollegiate athletics leadership and management skills and experiences, and we are very fortunate to have him as our Director of Athletics,” Garibaldi said. “Our student-athletes, coaches, and other athletics staff will benefit greatly from his current work at the NCAA.” More than 70 individuals applied for the position.
I think they made a solid hire. They really couldn’t go wrong with any of the finalist they had but Vowels seems to have the experience and integrity the position had been missing. It was a big week for the athletic department at the University of Detroit Mercy.