Penguin Basketball History


The first organized sport at Youngstown College was the men’s basketball program. The Penguins began play in 1927-28 under the direction of Al Fairfield. YSU has played every season since, except for three years during World War II. The name associated most with Youngstown State basketball is Dom Rosselli. Rosselli coached the Penguins for 39 years and ended his career with a 589-388 record. Under Rosselli, YSU reached the NAIA National Tournament three times. In school history there have been 12 head coaches, including current coach Jerry Slocum. The Penguins have more than 900 victories in school history.

The program achieved Division I status in 1981-82 when it joined the Ohio Valley Conference. In 1992-93 YSU began play in the Mid-Continent Conference playing in the league through the 2000-01 season. In 2001-02, the Penguins joined the Horizon League. YSU has twice been just one win shy of making the NCAA Division I Tournament reaching the finals of the Ohio Valley Tournament in 1985 and the finals of the Mid-Con Tournament in 1998 . The men’s basketball program was involved in NAIA competition until 1959-60 before becoming a Division II member prior to the 1960-61 campaign (until 1980-81).

As a Division II member, YSU competed in nine NCAA Regional Tournaments reaching the finals in 1972. In NAIA action, Youngstown College appeared in four National Tournaments (1947, 1957, 1958, 1959). The furthest the Penguins advanced was in 1957 and 1958 when they reached the Elite Eight.

Prepared by YSU Sports Information Director Trevor Parks


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