Youth Men Coaching Announcement

The Eltham Wildcats are pleased to announce Rod Degenhardt as the Head Coach of the Youth Men for the 2023 Big V Season.

Rod has been coaching in the Eltham program for the past 9 years since the first of his 3 sons took to the court for the Wildcats. He has had the opportunity to work in all age groups, across both the Domestic and Championship programs during this time and is currently heading up the under 20-1 Boys team who will be fighting for the VC championship.

Degenhardt joined the Eltham senior program as an assistant coach in the Youth League Men’s team in 2019. His basketball journey did not start at the Eltham Wildcats, he took up playing the game at the age of 6 where he had an opportunity to play at elite levels in both junior and senior basketball in the Knox and Kilsyth programs.

Rod began coaching at a young age and had his first VJBL coaching position back in 1990. He has had coaching stints at Kilsyth (juniors), a taste of senior coaching with 4 years as player/coach in a second tier Queensland league in the late 2000’s and a short stop at Bulleen (juniors) before joining the Wildcats. His passion has been on player growth and development, creating an environment of continuous improvement and promoting the value of being part of a team, club, and community.

Rod is eager to develop, build and strengthen pathways for Eltham Wildcat junior players into the Senior program.

“I am truly grateful to have been given the opportunity to be a part of the senior basketball program at Eltham over the past 3 years. The integration of the program and collaboration between coaches has been the perfect environment for coaches to develop and thrive, and I have certainly been a beneficiary of that.

“After the last 3 years as an assistant coach with an amazing group of athletes at the Youth League level, I now look forward to continuing on in that space as head coach. I am passionate about continuing to strengthen the pathway for Eltham juniors into senior basketball and to continue helping those in the program achieve their goals and ambitions.”

Eltham Wildcats CEO Connor Matthews believes the appointment is a perfect one.

“We are incredibly excited for Rod to take over as the Youth Mens Head Coach. Rod has dedicated himself to many aspects of the club and has more than proven he is ready to take the reins of what is a really promising Youth Mens group. His passion and knowledge is a rare combination and we can’t wait to see where he takes this group.”

The Youth Men will begin their preseason training in the coming months in preparation for the 2023 season which will tip off in late March.