Rip City fans are used to cheering on Terry Porter as a Trail Blazer, but now they can root for him as the lead Pilot.
Porter, a 17-year NBA veteran who also coached with five different league teams, was named Friday as the new head coach at the University of Portland.
“This is a very exciting day for the University of Portland and Pilot Basketball,” University of Portland Athletic Director Scott Leykam said. “Terry brings a phenomenal basketball pedigree to campus having coached and competed at the highest levels. He also will be a perfect fit for our campus and its mission of teaching and learning, faith and formation, and service and leadership.”
A two-time All-Star, Porter said that for all of the accolades he has from his pro career, it was a figure during his college days that helped him come to this new role.
“I am honored that Scott Leykam and University President Fr. Mark Poorman have given me this great opportunity. I’m excited about working tirelessly to continue to build this program up and establish a great tradition of Portland Basketball,” Porter said. “I have been blessed to coach at the highest level in the NBA, but college has always intrigued me because of the impact that my college coach, Dick Bennett, has had on my life. To now have the opportunity, in my hometown of Portland, to impact other young men’s lives is phenomenal and to be able to do so at a prestigious academic institution means a lot.”
The Trail Blazers retired Porter’s jersey in 2009, and since retiring he has served as a team ambassador. A staple of the Portland community, Porter is a member of the Boys and Girls Club Hall of Fame and active in numerous community programs.
The university will hold a news conference Tuesday at noon to introduce Porter at the Chiles Center. The public is welcome to attend.
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