Men’s Basketball Coaching Staff

Head Coach James ChildsCoach Childs Coach James Childs has been at The University of Connecticut at Avery Point for 14 seasons.  His teams are  regarded as one of the hardest working teams in Region  XXI.  He is a tireless worker and teacher of techniques and  fundamentals of the game.  His teams trademark pressure  and fast paced style of play has led to many exciting games.Coach Childs has coached some of the best players in the  history of the program.  He has had All-Region First Selections for 8 of his seasons and has had an All-Region Team Selection every season.  Many of his players have gone on to continue their playing careers at four year schools.  They are always considered prepared and ready to have an immediate impact.  The most impressive part of Coach Childs’ teams are the team GPA.  There are at least two players per season on the Dean’s List at the University.  The team GPA averages around 3.2 every season.  Coach Childs is most proud of the fact that over 90% of his former players who moved on to a four school complete their studies.  Coach Childs is a two time Coach of the Year winner in Region XXI for his efforts on the floor.  He credits all of the coaches and players he has worked with in his 28 year coaching career for the awards.  Childs finally received the one award that has eluded him and his team during his tenure.  They were awarded The Sportsmanship Award for 2014-2015.Coach Childs works troubled youth and lives with his wife in Waterford, CT with their four children.
Associate Head Coach Sam Cheung Coach Sam Cheung enters his first season as Associate Head Coach at UCONN-Avery Point and will be taking over as Head Coach starting in the 2018-19 season. Previously, Coach Cheung was an Assistant at the United States Coast Guard Academy and the Head Coach for Montville High School. As an Assistant at the Academy, Coach Cheung lead the program’s player development initiatives and helped guide the team’s offensive strategies. During his tenure there, the Academy teams won 2 Conference Titles and appeared in 2 NCAA tournaments – a feat only accomplished 3 times in the school’s history. Furthermore, during the 2008 NCAA tournament run, the Academy reached all the way to the Elite 8 (never been done before in school history)! As a player, Coach Cheung was a 1st-Team All-State point guard in Connecticut for Waterford High School, a 1st-Team All New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference player for the Academy, and was recently inducted into the New England Basketball Hall of Fame (Class of 2013). Coach Cheung currently resides in Montville, CT with his wife Jennifer and two children Jada and Jace.
Assistant Coach Darnell W. IsaacsIssacs  Coach Issacs played 4 years of Division I Basketball at San Diego State  from 1881 to 1985, and played Professional Basketball in Germany for 7  years.  While there he coached the local American High School at the  Varsity level from 1985 until 1991, and won three European  Championships.  He returned to the United States in 1992-1995 and secured a position on the staff with NFA as an assistant with Hugh (Duke) Campbell.  In 2005 he assisted Coach Gary Ballestrini during the summer with the program at Fitch High School, and was asked to be his assistant, but work conflicts prevented that.  Coach Issacs has been coaching varsity level AAU basketball since 2005 – 2013 with Connecticut Elite.
Director of Basketball Operations Kate FrenchFrench Kate French is the Director of Basketball Operations at UConn-Avery  Point. She has over 20 years’ experience in business management as  well as being the Vice President of local Appliance Company. A native to  the area who gives to the surrounding communities by hosting  fundraisers for area shelters, tending to area cemeteries, assisting at food banks and being involved with her Local High School Sports Booster Club. Her continuing business experience with the area communities and local sports teams makes her a valuable resource to the UConn-Avery Point sports programs.