If Boston University wasn't so far away from York, former Central York basketball standout Tre Bowman likely would have gone to school there.

Why? Because in his high school days, Bowman was floored by Patrick Chambers, then head coach at Boston.

"My general impression back then (in high school) is that (Chambers) really does seem enthusiastic. He has a certain type of swagger about him that he really just wants to win games," Bowman said on Sunday.

Bowman wound up choosing Penn State because it was closer to home. Oddly enough, though, Bowman is now going to get the chance to play for Chambers.

Penn State on Friday announced that Chambers is the new head coach of the men's basketball program. The 40-year-old Chambers comes over from Boston University, where he led the school to its first NCAA Tournament appearance in nine years last winter in just his second season with the program.

Chambers replaces Ed DeChellis, who left Penn State for Navy in late May.

In his eight years at the helm with the Nittany Lions, DeChellis' biggest accomplishments was an NIT title in 2009 and an appearance in the NCAA men's basketball tournament this past season, where Penn State was ousted in the first round in a two-point loss to Temple.


But DeChellis should have accomplished more. A prime example is this past season, when the team had four senior starters, including the school's all-time leading scorer (and arguably the best player in Penn State history) in Talor Battle. The Nittany Lions, though, went 9-9 in Big Ten play, finishing in a four-way tie for fourth place in the conference. Penn State got the NCAA Tournament appearance thanks in part to a run to the Big Ten tournament championship game, where it lost to Ohio State.

With the amount of talent that team had, and with four seasons to coach up those seniors, DeChellis should have achieved more this past season.

Some might say that Penn State will always be a "football school." That will probably hold true, but even Ohio State has proven that a football school can still be good at basketball. With the resources Penn State has at its disposal, the right coach could turn this program into a reputable basketball school.

Maybe Chambers can do just that. He came to Boston after five seasons as an assistant at Villanova, where the Wildcats averaged 25 wins and went to the 2009 Final Four.

He is also a native of Philadelphia, where most of the state's top talent comes from. Penn State has always struggled in recruiting that area, but it sounds like Chambers can change that.

And by all accounts, Chambers will also bring enthusiasm to the program, which is a change from the mild-mannered DeChellis.

Hopefully the enthusiasm of Chambers can help get the word out about the program and possibly convince potential top recruits to come to Happy Valley.

-- Reach John Walk at 505-5406 or jwalk@york dispatch.com.