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Men?s Basketball Adds Mermuys, Brase to Staff
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: October 17, 2006
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Hiring fills two vacancies in time for the start of the 2006-07 season


TUCSON, Ariz. ?- University of Arizona men’s basketball coach Lute Olson today announced the hiring of Jesse Mermuys as the director of basketball operations and Matt Brase as the administrative assistant and video coordinator.


“Jesse and Matt are welcome additions to our staff,” said Olson.  “They both bring a great deal of experience to their positions and a familiarity with our internal operations.”


Mermuys, 26, joins the Wildcat staff after serving most recently as the video coordinator at New Mexico State University since August 2006.  Prior to that, he was an assistant basketball coach at Southern Utah University during the 2005-06 season.  While at the Cedar City, Utah, school, Mermuys handled the Thunderbirds’ video and scouting efforts, as well as his on-court coaching duties.


 “Obviously, this is a dream job at my dream school,” said Mermuys.  “This is as good as it gets for me on the college level.”


He got his start in coaching as the head freshman and varsity assistant coach at Tucson’s Salpointe Catholic High School from 2001-03.  During the 2003-04 campaign, Mermuys was an assistant at Pima Community College.


Mermuys also served as the camp director for the Luke Walton/Richard Jefferson basketball camp, and was responsible for creating, organizing and running all aspects of the camp.  He was also the program director and head coach of the Team Walton AAU program since 2004.


Mermuys is a December 2004 graduate of the University of Arizona with a degree in business management.


Brase, 24, returns to the Arizona program after playing for the Wildcats from 2003-05.  Since graduation in 2005, Brase was employed by Hamilton Aerospace Technologies.  During the summer of 2006, he was the assistant coordinator of the Arizona Cactus Classic, a national AAU tournament.


“It’s an honor to be back in this program,” said Brase.  “I am excited to get started.  I can’t think of a better place to begin my coaching career than at the University of Arizona.”


Brase averaged 0.7 points and 0.5 rebounds in 26 appearances during his collegiate career playing for his grandfather.  He posted career-high totals of four points and four rebounds against Oregon on Feb. 20, 2005, his final McKale Center appearance.  He graduated in May of 2005 with a degree in business management.  He is a member of Phi Beta Lambda and Phi Theta Kappa.


“Both Jesse and Matt bring a lot of experience and passion to the program, said UA associate head coach Jim Rosborough, who headed the search committee.  “They each have years of experience working at our camps and are very familiar to us as a staff and with our former players.”


Mermuys and Brase fill the vacancies left by Reggie Geary, who left for an assistant coaching position with the NBA’s Developmental League, and Jack Murphy, who left for the head video coordinator’s position with the NBA’s Denver Nuggets.

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