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Joe Pasternack represents Metairie as next coaching star
Joe Pasternack enters his sixth year at UC Santa Barbara. (Credit: Kelvin Kuo/USA TODAY Sports)

Joe Pasternack represents Metairie as next coaching star

METAIRIE, La. (BVM) – Joe Pasternack has become a rising star in the coaching field with his success at UC Santa Barbara. At just 45 years old, he could be given the keys to a big-time college basketball program sooner rather than later.

But before Pasternack turned into a hot commodity at the collegiate level, he learned the fundamentals of the game at Metairie Park Country Day School where he played varsity basketball all four years.

After excelling on the court for the Cajuns, he attended Indiana University and served as a student manager under Bob Knight.

After graduating in 1999, Pasternack took a position at the University of California, Berkeley, where he spent eight seasons.

In 2007, he got his first opportunity as a head coach back home with the University of New Orleans.

In four seasons, he finished his tenure with the Privateers with a 54-60 record. After the 2010-2011 season, Pasternack opted to return to the PAC-12 with the University of Arizona as an assistant coach.

He spent 6 seasons with the Wildcats before accepting his current position in 2017.

The Gauchos have historically been one of the most prideful programs in Mid-Major basketball, and Pasternack has continued that tradition.

The year prior to Pasternack’s takeover, UC Santa Barbara went 6-22. But he quickly turned things around by winning 23 games in his first season.

Pasternack kept the team on track the following year, before a historic season for the program in 2020-2021.

The Gauchos finished with a 22-5 record that year, good enough to take home the Big West regular season championship. They also did not lose a home game all year long.

UC Santa Barbara continued their hot streak through postseason play, winning the Big West Tournament Championship, clinching an NCAA Tournament appearance for the sixth time in school history.

Unfortunately for the Gauchos, they ran into a good Creighton team in the first round and lost by a measly point.

Pasternack would still take home the Big West Coach of the Year award that season.

While they did not repeat the same level of success this past year, they still put up a respectable record of 17-11.

Pasternack is about to enter his 22nd season in the coaching industry, but it still seems like the best is yet to come for the Metairie native.

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