PHILADELPHIA - A 1996 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Dan Leibovitz has returned to his alma mater to serve as an assistant men's basketball coach on classmate Jerome Allen's staff. Leibovitz' connection to Coach Allen goes beyond Penn, however, to when they were high school classmates and basketball teammates at Episcopal Academy.
"I think Dan's resume speaks for itself in this profession," said Allen, who was promoted to the John R. Rockwell Head Coach of Men's Basketball position at Penn in March. "More important to me, though, is the way he treats people in all areas of life. I have been fortunate to know Dan for 23 years -- not only do I know him in this profession, but he has always been someone I look up to as a person. To have him on our staff is great, I could not ask for a better person in that spot. Dan will be a great representative of our program and the University."
"I could not be more excited to return to Penn," said Leibovitz. "A couple of days ago I was walking onto The Palestra floor, thinking about being a part of the Big 5 again, about Penn being 10th in all-time wins and winning the Ivy League 25 times. By the time I reached midcourt, I knew that this is where I wanted to be.
"Jerome has been a great friend since high school, and I know he is destined to succeed as the head coach at Penn. The opportunity to help him realize his dreams while helping to restore such a storied tradition was something I just could not pass up. And make no mistake about it; we will work tirelessly to make that happen.
"Penn is a special place for me and my family," he continued. "It goes far beyond my graduating from here. My grandfather went here; my mother went here; my wife got her Master's here. This is an institution that has given all of us so much. I am honored for the opportunity to finally give something back."
Prior to his return to Philadelphia, Leibovitz spent four years as the head coach at the University of Hartford. Six players earned America East honors in four seasons under Leibovitz. Both Joe Zeglinski (2008) and Bo Taylor (2007) were named to the all-conference first team and ranked in the top five in the league in scoring. As a redshirt-junior, Zeglinsk earned second team honors in 2010. Zeglinski was also an all-rookie team selection in his first year, as was Morgan Sabia in 2008. Rounding out the list of award winners are Michael Turner, an all-defensive team pick in 2008, and Jaret von Rosenberg, an all-academic selection in 2008 and 2009.
In his short time at the helm, Leibovitz established a wide net on the recruiting trails. His first four recruiting classes yielded players from California (5), Texas (3), Pennsylvania (4), Georgia, Virginia, Alabama, Oklahoma, Washington, DC and Puerto Rico.
In only his second season, Leibovitz led the Hawks to a school Division I record 18 victories and their first-ever America East Championship finals appearance. Hartford also notched its highest regular-season finish in the America East Conference, tying for second place with a 10-6 record.
The 2007-08 Hawks ranked third in the conference in scoring (70.8 ppg) and set school and America East records with 312 three-pointers. Hartford finished the year ranked 17th nationally in three-pointers per game and also broke the school record for treys in a game (18).
After earning the second seed for the 2008 America East Championship, Leibovitz and the Hawks won back-to-back games in the tournament for the first time in program history. The following weekend, Hartford faced UMBC for the conference title in a game televised nationally on ESPN2.
In his first season, Leibovitz guided Hartford to a 13-18 overall record and the quarterfinals of the America East Championship. Along the way, the Hawks picked up more non-conference wins than any Hartford team since 1993-94 and produced their sixth-straight winning home court record (7-5 at Chase Arena at Reich Family Pavilion).
Overall, Leibovitz went 46-82 in his four years in Hartford, including an 8-22 record in 2009-10. The Hawks won at least one game in the America East Championship in three of Leibovitz's four seasons.
Formerly the top assistant coach at Temple University, Leibovitz joined the Hartford family after spending 10 seasons with Hall of Fame head coach John Chaney.
Leibovitz joined the Temple staff at the start of the 1996-97 season and helped the Owls to 10 straight postseason appearances, including five NCAA Tournaments (1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001) and a pair of Elite Eight appearances (1999, 2001). Temple also won four Atlantic 10 Conference regular-season championships (1998, 1999, 2000, 2002) and two conference championships (2000, 2001) during his tenure, which tied for the longest among A-10 assistant coaches at the time. As Chaney's right-hand man and top recruiter, Leibovitz' record while on the Owl staff was 201-124 (.618).
Leibovitz was named Best Assistant in the Atlantic 10 by Street & Smith's in 2005-06. During his time at Temple, he was responsible for recruiting the likes of future NBA player Mardy Collins and Dionte Christmas, a three-time all-conference first team selection and the A-10's leading scorer for three seasons from 2007-09.
In 2005, Leibovitz was thrown into the role of acting coach during the final three regular-season contests and the Owls' two Atlantic 10 Tournament games as Chaney served a self-imposed and then University sanctioned suspension. The Owls won three of the five contests and ended the season by advancing to the National Invitation Tournament. Leibovitz also served as the Owls' head coach for the final game of the 2005-06 season against Akron in the NIT, as Chaney did not coach the game in order to be with his wife, who was undergoing a medical procedure.
Before Hartford, Leibovitz spent 11 summers as an assistant coach at the John Chaney-Sonny Hill Basketball Camp. He began his coaching career in 1994 at Episcopal Academy.
Leibovitz completed his master's degree in the Sport Management and Leisure Studies program at Temple in 1998.
Leibovitz, 36, is married to the former Nancy Abrams. They are the proud parents of three-year-old daughter Kaiya Daisy and one-year old son Noah Chaney.