Caldwell University men’s basketball coach honored for his achievements at school

CALDWELL — The small, Catholic liberal arts school of Caldwell University honored their longtime basketball coach over the weekend.

The tribute ceremony at the school wasn’t what Mark Corino had in mind when he first stepped foot on campus at the university.

“I’ve given this institution a solid day’s work for the last 30 years, and that’s something that I’m most proud of” Corino said, who has exceeded his wildest expectations as the university’s athletic director and men’s head basketball coach.

The school honored Corino by renaming the floor of the George R. Newmann Center after him.

“I think this is something we should’ve done years ago actually to commemorate Mark. He’s not retiring. I don’t know that he’s leaving coaching. None of that’s happening, but it’s a matter of it. At times you just need to commemorate the milestones that people achieve and to really celebrate their victories” said University President Nancy Blattner.

Corino may be recognized as the winningest active men’s head basketball coach in New Jersey, but he said he never wanted to be measured by wins or losses. He said he would rather be recognized for his life after graduation.

“I stand here on the shoulders of all the others that contributed to our successes and have contributed to our growth,” Corino said.

Former and current players couldn’t think of a person more fitting to have the court dedicated to, but they also aren’t surprised that coach Corino is bit uncomfortable by all the attention.

“He doesn’t like the spotlight on him and his dedication and commitment to these programs in the basketball team and the athletics here is beyond words,” said former Caldwell basketball players Matt Stuart.

“I’m hoping I get to see him cry for the first time… I’ve never ever seen him cry ever before,” said Caldwell University senior Ahmad Harrison.

Harrison got his wish, but Corino isn’t ashamed of his tears. The Belleville native has helped the school transition from the NAIA to Division 2 Institution, along with spearheading the growth of the athletic department from three to 16 programs. As for what’s next for the living legend, retirement is not the answer.

“People say that you’ll know when you are. Well, if that’s the case, I’m not ready today because I still love what I do and still have passion for what I do,” Corino said.