Leaving A Legacy: A look at the career of Kirby Dean

Published: Mar. 14, 2018 at 12:29 AM EDT
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Kirby Dean has coached and won more games than anyone in the history of Eastern Mennonite men's basketball, but the 15-year veteran has seen his final contest on the sideline at EMU.


as head coach in early January. He coached through the end of the 2017-2018 season before bringing an end to his career leading the Runnin' Royals.

The EMU program was coming off a 3-22 record when Dean took the reigns prior to the 2003-2004 season. He soon turned Eastern Mennonite into a nationally-recognized team. Of EMU's seven seasons with 15 wins or more, six came during Dean's tenure. He's also the only coach to lead the program to a twenty-win season, which he did twice (2009-2010 & 2010-2011).

Dean's best team came during the 2009-2010 season when EMU went 25-5 overall and won the ODAC regular season championship. That same squad advanced to the NCAA Division III Elite Eight and finished the season ranked #4 in the nation.

In 15 seasons at Eastern Mennonite, Dean compiled an overall record of 201-195. However, his greatest impact came in changing the culture of the program and acting as a mentor to his players, both on and off the court.

Dean's long-time assistant, Melvin Felix, has been hired to take over as Eastern Mennonite's head coach.

Dean cited family reasons for making the 2017-18 season his last as head coach. He now serves as director of parks and recreation for Rockingham County.