Pat Kelsey, 35, is Xavier's Associate Head Coach. Kelsey, a former Xavier team captain spent eight seasons at Wake Forest and is in his second year on the Musketeer staff.
"Pat Kelsey is regarded as one of the best assistant coaches in America," said Chris Mack. "He has been pursued by some of America's top programs and has been involved in several head coaching vacancies but decided to return to his hometown of Cincinnati and Xavier, our alma mater. I viewed his hiring as a major coup for the Xavier Nation. Most importantly, Pat embodies what Xavier stands for and believes in the total development of our student-athletes."
Kelsey has earned the reputation as one of the nation's premier assistant basketball coaches during his eight seasons at Wake Forest under the late Skip Prosser and then Dino Gaudio and as associate head coach at Xavier under Chris Mack.
Kelsey began his coaching career at his prep alma mater, Cincinnati's Elder High School, from 1998-2001 as an assistant coach under former Xavier guard Joe Schoenfeld. Kelsey first came to Wake Forest in 2001 as director of basketball operations. Mack was an assistant on Prosser's staff during Kelsey's three years as DBO. After three years in the DBO position, Prosser promoted Kelsey to assistant coach prior to the 2004-05 season.
During his time in Winston-Salem, Wake averaged nearly 21 wins per year in eight seasons, earning five NCAA Tournament berths, an NIT berth, a No. 1 national ranking in two different seasons and an ACC regular season championship. During his Wake Forest tenure, he worked with current NBA players Chris Paul, Josh Howard, Darius Songaila, James Johnson, Jeff Teague, Al-Farouq Aminu and Ishmael Smith.
Kelsey has played a key role in garnering nationally-ranked recruiting classes to Xavier and before that at Wake Forest. Guard Ishmael Smith was an All-ACC selection and is currently a member of the Houston Rockets, while forward James Johnson was a two-time All-ACC selection and finished as runner-up for 2008 ACC Rookie of the Year and later was selected number 17 overall by the Chicago Bulls in the 2009 NBA Draft. Kelsey also recruited five-star prospect Al-Farouq Aminu, who was ranked as the No. 7 recruit nationally and a McDonald's All-America in 2008. Aminu was an All-ACC selection in 2010 and was selected number eight overall by the L.A. Clippers in the 2010 NBA Draft.
College Bound Hoops ranked Kelsey eighth in the nation among college basketball assistants in its latest rankings. In addition to his recruiting prowess, Kelsey is also recognized as an excellent teacher and tactician in terms of player development, scouting and game preparation.
Kelsey earned a reputation as an innovative marketer during his time in Winston-Salem, N.C. He worked with current XU head coach and former Wake assistant Chris Mack and Wake marketing to produce the "Tie-Dye Nation" campaign, which still thrives today as teh heartbeat of the Wake Forest fanbase.
He was first associated with Prosser as a leader in the Xavier backcourt for three seasons (1996 to 1998), helping the Musketeers reach two NCAA Tournaments. The former point guard served as team co-captain during the 1997-98 season and was voted the team's Most Inspirational Player in 1996 and 1998.
Kelsey began his playing career at Wyoming in 1993-94, starting 22 games as a freshman, before transferring back to his hometown to play at Xavier. Prior to college, he earned All-City honors while leading Elder to a 25-4 record and the 1993 Div. I State Championship.
Kelsey, who was born May 15, 1975 in Cincinnati, is a 1998 graduate of Xavier with a degree in business administration and marketing. Kelsey and wife, Lisa, have two daughters, three-year-old Ruthie and two-year old Caroline.