KAMLOOPS — There’s no doubt Ken Olynyk’s legacy is all around us here at TRU. He ushered in the CIS/USport era at the university, and after an illustrious 14-year stint as Athletic Director at TRU, he retired last spring.
Friday, Olynyk came back to the TCC as the opposition, as this summer he took the job as head coach of the UBCO Heat Men’s Basketball team. It’s a role he’s having some fun with.
“It’s been fun. It’s been a lot of fun,” Ken Olynyk said of his coaching position.
After more than a decade at the helm of the TRU WolfPack athletics program, Ken Olynyk made his return to the TCC Friday afternoon - not in his familiar orange in black - but in the royal blue of the UBC Okanagan Heat.
“I love coaching, and it was an opportunity that was presented to me. I mean, I didn’t go chasing it. I said y’know what, for a year, I’ll do it,” Olynyk explained. “I love to coach, I love work with kids, so this worked out well.”
For some of the TRU coaches who worked closely with Olynyk during his time as Athletic Director for the WolfPack, it was a bit of an adjustment seeing their former boss on the opposition’s sideline.
“He was the guy who let me come in as an assistant coach,” TRU Women’s Basketball assistant coach Chuck Ferguson said. “[He’s] somebody who has that coaching bug in them, and the opportunity arose to indulge that bug again, and the excitement probably got his juices going.”
“He hired me!” TRU Men’s Basketball Head Coach Scott Clark said. “I’ve known Ken since I was a young guy working with the national team. He always treated me very well… he was a great guy to work for because of the guy that he is.”
Despite the respect Men’s Head Basketball Coach Scott Clark has for Olynyk when the game gets going, it's friends off.
“For those 40 minutes of clock time, I don’t know if it’s Ken Olynyk or who it is… I just want to win,” Clark said after the game.
The result went the WolfPack’s way Friday afternoon, as they topped the Heat 82-66. Olynyk will have another chance to beat his old his team Saturday night, and despite the loss, he still has a soft spot for the team in orange and black.
“You want to win, you want to win,” Olynyk said. “[But] I’ve got a lot of orange shirts, so I can go put one on right now and come back to watch volleyball.”
WolfPack WBB win OT Thriller vs UBCO
Michelle Bos had 21 points, including all 13 the WolfPack scored in overtime, as the TRU women’s basketball team got their second win of the year against the visiting UBCO Heat.
The game was tied 56-56 after regulation, which is when the 5th year guard took over for TRU. Bos hit a three, three field goals, and four free throws in extra time to secure the victory for the ‘Pack.
Both the men's and women's basketball teams host the Heat in a rematch on Saturday.
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