Navigate Left
  • Photo taken by Molly Myers on Sept. 3, 2023 downtown across from where the Farmers Market is held.

    Features

    Abandoned shoes in Chico: photo series

  • Left side of table, Jenna McMahon, Nathan Chiochios and Jessica Miller sit with, on the right side front to back, Callum Standish, Molly Myers, Nadia Hill, and Grace Stark at  Estom Jamani Dining Commons. Photo taken April 29 by a kind employee at the dining hall.

    Food

    The Orion tries the dining hall

  • Both faculty members’ and students’ mental health are suffering due to a lack of support at Chico State and across the California State University System. Photo by Vie Studio on Pexels.

    Features

    Faculty, students’ mental health continue to suffer

  • Thanks to horror films, some names have been ruined ... or made cool. Photo by Jeswin Thomas from Pexels.

    Arts & Entertainment

    Names horror films have ruined … or made cool

  • Sydney Sweeney in Immaculate. Photo courtesy of NEON.

    Arts & Entertainment

    He said, she said: ‘Immaculate’

Navigate Right
Breaking News
Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Alumnus to take on duty of assistant coach

lucasgabriel.jpeg
Lucas Gabriel, the new assistant coach of the Chico State men's basketball team. Courtesy of Chico Wildcats.

When offered the Wildcat’s assistant coaching job, Lucas Gabriel has just one thing to say.

“Where do I sign up?” Gabriel said.

The Chico State men’s basketball team will welcome back a familiar face to the sidelines this season. Gabriel, a graduate assistant from 2008-2010, will take on the role of head assistant coach for the upcoming season.

With the team’s success in the most recent seasons, it’s no surprise that Gabriel was quick to jump in.

“I took this opportunity to be with the best Division II basketball program on the West Coast,” Gabriel said. “This offer in my eyes is a lot better than Division I offers.”

A major difference Gabriel noticed when returning to Chico was the enthusiasm in the players’ voices when getting a call from the Wildcats.

The players just seem to be fired up, Gabriel said.

“Chico State has a formula that gets the job done,” Gabriel said.

Gabriel is right on track with this formula, spending two seasons under head coach Greg Clink in the past. Gabriel spent those seasons listening to Clink, going on recruiting trips and helping run practices. The two have a relationship that goes outside of basketball, including spending time with their families.

A moment that stuck out to Gabriel during his time as a grad assistant was during a major game in the season against Cal State Dominguez Hills. It was a game that came down to the last shot, and ended with a buzzer-beating 3-pointer by alumni Jon Baird.

“I remember Gabriel was right in Clink’s ear wanting to run the play he drew up,” Baird said. “Gabriel is always prepared and brings a lot of energy.”

Baird also mentioned how close Gabriel was with his players and how skilled he is at scouting other teams.

After graduating from Chico State, Gabriel parted ways to Fresno City. There he won three consecutive league titles, two state Final Four appearances and a 2012 state championship.

“He was willing to constantly put his players needs before his own,” former Fresno City player Tommy Jordan said. “Whether it was dedicating time to work out with us, helping us with school or simply asking how our day went, he would always go the extra mile.”

In addition to his extra effort, work ethic is big in Gabriel’s eyes.

“One thing I guarantee is that no one will outwork Luke,” Jordan said.

Following that year, Gabriel headed out to Bellevue University in Nebraska to take on the head assistant job where they finished 29-6, grabbing a league championship and a National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Sweet 16 appearance.

“I am so fortunate to be a part of winning programs,” Gabriel said. “All you can really say is that it feels good that the hard work is paying off.”

Gabriel will continue his journey on the sidelines with the Wildcats.

“I’m really excited to be back with this program,” he said.

Ryan Grady can be reached at [email protected] or @RyanGrady23 on Twitter.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Orion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *