Will Freedman enters his third season as head coach for the Lassen Community College men’s basketball team. This will be Freedman’s fourth season coaching at Lassen College. During Freedman’s time at Lassen, he has had 16 players sign with four year schools to continue their education and basketball careers
Freedman, a Santa Monica native, played 5 years (2007-2011) at Cal State University East Bay and received his Master’s degree in Coaching and Athletic Administration from the University of Concordia, Irvine in 2015.
As a collegiate basketball player, Freedman was named California Pacific Conference Freshman Player of the Year. He also helped lead his team to the Cal Pac regular season championship, a Cal Pac tournament championship, a trip to the NAIA national tournament in Branson, MO, while being named first team all-conference.
Following his final two seasons at East Bay, in which the program was transitioning to NCAA II, he finished top five in scoring, top three in shooting percentage and top ten in rebounding in school history.
After graduating with a major in finance and a minor in economics, Freedman signed a professional contract with Israeli team Maccabi Hod Hasharon, Maccabi Haifa’s farm team. After a short stint where he played with both teams, he played in the 2011 Maccabi Pan American Games that took place in Sao Paulo, Brazil. While being a member of team USA, he won a gold medal in the men’s basketball open division.
After playing, Freedman began his coaching career at his alma mater Santa Monica High School from 2012-2014. He was the head sophomore coach his first year and the head JV coach his second year, while also being an assistant varsity coach. In 2013, the varsity team won the division 1AA CIF Southern Section championship, the division 1AA SoCal Regional Championship, and was runner up for the State Championship.
At his time at Santa Monica, Freedman had the opportunity to coach players who ended up continuing their basketball careers at the division one level (University California Berkeley, CSU Sacramento, Auburn University, University of Southern California and Gonzaga University).
During the 2016-17 season, Freedman was officially named the head men’s basketball coach as the interim tag was removed. It was also bounce back year for the cougars as the team more than doubled their win total from the season before, while also making the CCCAA State Playoffs. The Cougars finished 15-13 and third in the Golden Valley Conference. Key wins included beating #1 Las Positas College in the Mendocino Tournament Championship game and beating #4 Ohlone College in the Modesto Tournament Consolation Championship game.
Players to move on from the 2016-17 team were: Sophomore Danny Spinuzza – Texas A&M International (NCAA D2), freshman Kenny Macklin – San Francisco State (NCAA D2), sophomore Damien Trujillo – Union College in Kentucky (NAIA D2), sophomore Bruno Castillo – Presentation College in South Dakota (NAIA D2), sophomores Colby Johnson and Jason Moore – Grace University (NCCAA) and Theron Durham – Central Baptist College (NAIA playing soccer).
During the 2015-16 season, Freedman was hired as interim head coach. The team was shorthanded for most of the year and finished with a 7-20 record. From that year’s team, sophomore Caleb Wood was #3 in the state in scoring averaging 23.2 points per game, and he signed with University of Pennsylvania (NCAA D1 Ivy League). Ryan Jeep also signed with Clarke University (NAIA D2 in Iowa) after a solid sophomore campaign.
In 2014-15, Freedman made the move to Susanville, where he was a volunteer assistant coach for Devin Aye. During that season the team went 23-7, finished second in the GVC while winning both the Chabot Tipoff Tournament and the San Jose City College Tournament. At one point the Cougars were ranked No. 3 in the state and No. 1 Northern California.