Head Coach- 1st Season
Alma Mater: Michigan State (B.A., 2003); Wayne State (M.A., 2005); Michigan State (M.S., 2008)
Joe Griffin was named Head Men's Basketball Coach at Roosevelt University on August 17, 2009,
bringing with him an enthusiasm for building a program that matches his pedigree. The fourth head coach in Roosevelt men's basketball history, Griffin has been charged with reviving a program that has been dormant for the last 20 years, and constructing a team that will begin competing in 2010-11 at the NAIA level as members of the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference.
While he got his start in coaching at the high school level, the 30-year old Michigan native honed his skills under the tutelage of Michigan State Head Coach Tom Izzo, serving for two seasons (2006-08) as a graduate assistant coach for the Spartans.
At Michigan State, Griffin played pivotal roles for the Spartans in the areas of player development, strength and conditioning, opponent and self-scouting, travel, film exchange and recruiting. In his two seasons with the Spartans, Griffin aided Michigan State to 50 wins and back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances, including a trip to the ‘Sweet 16' in 2008 where MSU was edged out by eventual national runner-up Memphis.
Griffin's coaching philosophy which emphasizes defense and rebounding was reflected in the Spartans' play during his tenure. The squad led the Big Ten in rebounding margin and was amongst the nation's leaders in field goal percentage defense each year. Griffin helped in the development of many former and current Michigan State standouts during his tenure, including NBA Draft pick Goran Suton (2009 All-Big Ten), Travis Walton (2009 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year), Raymar Morgan (2008 All-Big Ten), Drew Neitzel (2008 All-Big Ten, All-America Second Team), and Kalin Lucas (2009 Big Ten Player of the Year).
Griffin obtained his second graduate degree in 2008, a Master of Science in Coaching at Michigan State. He was also a guest instructor within the kinesiology department of the College of Education and a featured speaker at the 2008 Spartan Strength & Conditioning Clinic.
Following his two years at Michigan State, Griffin broadened his coaching resume as he headed southwest to take on assistant coaching duties at NCAA Division II Eastern New Mexico University. Despite spending just one season with the Greyhounds prior to taking his current position at Roosevelt, Griffin still managed to establish strong recruiting ties in the state of Texas, as well as the entire southwest, that will benefit the Lakers in the future.
Griffin's strongest recruiting ties remain in his home state of Michigan. He was born in Flint and later graduated from Romeo High School in Romeo, Mich. Griffin went on to play two seasons at St. Clair County Community College in Port Huron, Mich., beforeenrollingat Michigan State, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Advertising in 2003.
Griffin's next stop was graduate school at Wayne State University in Detroit, Mich. It was while earning a Master of Arts in Sports Administration that he got his first taste of coaching, leading the freshman team and assisting the varsity team at Stoney Creek High School in Rochester Hills, Mich., during the 2004 and 2005 seasons.
Finding his true calling in coaching, Griffin headed to Jacksonville, Fla., for one year as assistant varsity boy's basketball coach and English teacher at Sandalwood High School before returning to his home state to take the graduate assistant position for Coach Izzo.
Griffin is a member of the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) and has worked and been involved with numerous basketball camps and clinics throughout the country. He and his wife, Suzanne, live in Chicago.
Assistant Coach- 1st Season
Darryl Royster is in his first season as an assistant coach on the men's basketball staff under head coach Joe Griffin.
A familiar face in the Chicago basketball scene, Royster brings a wealth of experience as a coach and referee to the Lakers bench.
Royster made his mark in college basketball first as a referee, patrolling the hardwood for local college and high school games, as well as contests in the Big Ten, Missouri Valley Conference and Conference USA at the NCAA Division I level. He then transitioned his career into coaching when he started the RBS traveling basketball team for young men. Under his guidance, RBS became a prominent AAU squad both locally and nationally, taking second in 2003 at the AAU National Championships in Florida. Royster mentored many players who went on to success at the collegiate level both athletically and academically, including Jitim Young, Luther Head and Javale McGee.
Royster, a 1976 graduate of MacMurray College, was honored for his contribution to the game of basketball in 2009 when he was inducted into the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
Assistant Coach- 1st Season
Kevin Devitt is in his first season as a volunteer assistant coach on the men's basketball staff under head coach Joe Griffin.
Devitt, who is currently a Physical Education teacher and athletic director at May Community Academy in Chicago, joins the Lakers after spending the past two seasons as the head freshman boy's basketball coach and varsity assistant coach at Richards High School in Oak Lawn, Ill. During his tenure at Richards, the Bulldogs claimed back-to-back South Suburban Red Conference titles.
Devitt's coachng resume also includes stints with the Rising Starts AAU program in 2007 and the Chicago Rebels AAU program in 2008.
Devitt, a graduate of DePaul University, has aided Chicago area players in promoting their skills to prospective colleges, organizing and maintaining the South Suburban Fall Showcase League. The fall league has featured over 200 prospective student-athletes the last two years and is recognized as one of the top showcases in the state.
Devitt also founded the Chicago High School Classic, a high school all-star game that recognized the top 30 graduating seniors. The contest, which was played annually from 2005-09 and aired on Comcast CN 100, featured over 75 student-athletes who went on to compete at the NCAA Division I level.