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New seat on the bench : Sports : Oswego Ledger-Sentinel : Hometown Newspaper for Oswego and Montgomery, Illinois
New seat on the bench
Borrowman takes over Oswego baseball program after 10 years as assistant coach

by Kristin Sharp


As Matt Borrowman led the Oswego boys' basketball team through the early part of its summer schedule, the assistant coach had his fingers crossed.

He applied for the vacant position left by Kevin Schnable almost immediately after Schnable announced his resignation in late May. On Monday, the Oswego School District Board simultaneously approved Schnable's resignation and approved Borrowman as the newest boys' basketball head coach.

"The kids were excited. They wanted to keep it in the family, as Kevin Schnable kept saying. I think we're all excited," Borrowman said.

Borrowman has spent 14 years in the boys' basketball program and the past 10 seasons as Schnable's varsity assistant coach. He inherits a successful program that has won 183 games over 10 years, a conference championship, regional and sectional championships and state appearance. The 2013-14 team featured one junior, four sophomores and two freshmen in the regular rotation and returns all of its starting core.

"We've been very successful for the last 10 or so years so there's not a whole lot I'm going to change. I have some different philosophies offensively and we've put in a new offense," Borrowman said. "Defensively, that part of our system is not really going to change. I believe in the mantra, 'If it's not broke, don't fix it.' Despite our youth, we had a lot of success last year despite winning only 12 games. I don't want to change too much, but the offense is going to look different. That's one big change that a fan coming to the game will notice."

Borrowman will turn the focus to a ball screen offense, which he started implementing over the summer playing schedule.

"I've got a lot of really good pieces with the players to fit into that offense," Borrowman said.

"Matt has been the OHS assistant varsity coach under former coach Kevin Schnable for the past 10 years and has proven himself to be a strong leader and a solid role model as well as being a very knowledgeable basketball mind," said Oswego athletic director Darren Howard. "Matt is also a teacher at OHS and an Oswego resident. The fact that he is in the building every day with our student-athletes is also a positive factor."

"I am excited to see the direction that Matt will take the program moving forward and I am very confident he will be a successful head coach in this very rich, tradition steeped program."

Oswego kicked off the summer at Riverside-Brookfield and went 3-3 overall, with two of the losses coming against Bogan and Hinsdale Central. The Panthers enjoyed a 5-1 finish at the Oswego East Shootout with its only loss coming against Downers Grove North. That same team defeated Oswego again at its own Sectional Shootout on June 16.

"The highlight of the summer was when Brice Robinson, our 6-foot-7 junior, hit a three-point basket at the buzzer to beat Simeon at UIC (on June 8), and Simeon had their whole team there," Borrowman said. "I know it's only summertime, but it's still exciting and cresting a little bit of buzz around the program. We proved we can play with anybody, but we still had some losses that shouldn't be happening. It's all about development on the court, and we're still young."

Oswego will close out its summer slate with the two-day Morris Shootout, which ends today, Thursday, and a trip to the Illinois Wesleyan Shootout on Friday and Saturday.

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