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New UVU basketball coach Mark Pope to share his story of lifelong learning

29 October 2015 No Comment

For Immediate Release

University Marketing & Communications: Melinda Colton | 801-863-6807 | melindac@uvu.edu

Written by: Layton Shumway |  801-863-6863 | LShumway@uvu.edu

First-year Utah Valley University men’s basketball coach Mark Pope will share the story of his journey from NCAA champion to medical school and back on Wednesday, Nov. 4, at noon in the Grande Ballroom, as part of the UVUSA Academic Senate Speaker Series.

Pope was a key member of the 1996 NCAA men’s basketball national championship team at the University of Kentucky, where he also earned a bachelor’s degree in English. He entered the 1996 NBA Draft and was selected by the Indiana Pacers. Pope went on to play for three NBA teams as well as two professional basketball teams in Turkey.

Even while playing basketball professionally, Pope committed himself to furthering his education by taking classes at nearby universities. After retiring from the NBA in 2005, Pope enrolled in medical school at Columbia University, fully intending to leave basketball behind and become a doctor. A coaching offer from the University of Georgia in 2009 changed his mind, and Pope re-entered the basketball world, hoping to pass on his knowledge and experience.

After serving in assistant coaching positions at Georgia, Wake Forest, and Brigham Young University, Mark Pope was hired by UVU in 2015 as the eighth men’s basketball head coach in school history and the second in UVU’s 12-year Division I era.

Following Pope’s address, he will hold a “Pizza wth Pope” Q&A at 1:15 p.m. with members of UVU’s Mighty Athletic Wolverine League (MAWL). Students can RSVP online at uvu.orgsync.com/org/uvusa/Forms.

The address is part of the UVUSA Academic Senate speaker series, which features talks from prominent local and national figures. Outdoorsman and survivor Aron Ralston, who will speak on March 9, 2016. The events are free and open to the public.


Mark Pope

Mark Pope

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