Scott Bittner will coach the Stockton University men’s basketball team with more security this season.
The Ospreys this week removed the interim label and officially named Bittner head coach. The Linwood resident led Stockton to an 18-11 record and the ECAC championship last season.
“I didn’t worry too much about it,” Bittner said of the interim tag. “One of things we tell our players and I tell my children is that you can’t worry about things you can’t control. You just do the best you can and what happens happens.”
Bittner joined the Stockton University coaching staff in 2006. The Ospreys named him the interim head coach after Gerry Matthews stepped down in the summer of 2016 after 30 seasons with a career record of 603-243.
Bittner grew up in Ocean City and played at Ocean City High School and St. Augustine Prep before graduating from St. Augustine in 1990. A point guard, Bittner played at Wheeling Jesuit University, an NCAA Division II college in West Virginia. In his 10 seasons as a Stockton assistant, the Ospreys made six Division III tournament appearances and won five New Jersey Athletic Conference titles.
Bittner, 45, said being named the full-time coach will help potential recruits feel more secure about the program’s future.
“I don’t know if there’s ever complete stability,” Bittner said with a laugh. “You just feel like you have to win.”
Stockton begins practice Oct. 15.
“I’m excited,” Bittner said. “We have most of our guys back from last year.”