"Torrey is an incredibly talented assistant coach with SEC
experience," Muller said. "He's been successful wherever he has
been. Torrey can really recruit, but he is also an excellent
basketball coach and understands the game. His experience in other
parts of the country, in addition to the Midwest, really complements
Ward is eager to get to work with the Redbirds.
"I am excited about the opportunity to work with Dan Muller," Ward
said. "He is going to do great things at Illinois State, and I am
looking forward to being a part of an already winning program. There
is a lot of excitement in Normal. I'm proud to be a part of the
Ward spent the 2011-12 season coaching in China, where he played
professionally after his collegiate career. Prior to China, Ward
worked five seasons at Ole Miss and helped guide the Rebels to four
postseason berths and a pair of SEC West titles.
Working with the Rebel backcourt, he tutored all-SEC guards Clarence
Sanders, Todd Abernethy, David Huertas, Chris Warren and 2009 SEC
Freshman of the Year Terrico White. Ward was also heavily involved
in recruiting and was responsible for several strong recruiting
Before coaching at Ole Miss, Ward spent three seasons on the
Jacksonville State staff. After working as a volunteer coach during
the 2003-04 campaign, Ward served as an assistant for two seasons at
In 2005-06, Ward helped the Gamecocks, a preseason 10th-place
pick in the Ohio Valley Conference, win 10 of their final 13 games
to finish fourth in the league standings and reach the semifinals of
the OVC tournament. Ward assisted with recruiting and administrative
duties for JSU.
[to top of second column]
Before entering the coaching ranks, Ward played professionally
in the Chinese Basketball Association for the Shanghai Sharks,
where he was a teammate of former NBA star Yao Ming. As a member
of the Shandong in 2002, Ward helped the Bulls win the
conference championship before falling in the CBA finals. He
finished fourth in the league in scoring and also won the
league's slam-dunk contest.
A Birmingham, Ala., native, Ward competed in 110 games with 74 starts
and scored almost 800 points during his career at University of
Alabama at Birmingham (1997-2000).
He was voted as the Conference USA Runner-up Defensive Player of
the Year to Kenyon Martin and earned C-USA Player of the Week
three different times as a Blazer.
As a junior, Ward helped the Blazers to a 22-10 record, a
divisional championship and a berth in the NCAA tournament. He
graduated from UAB in 2001 with a degree in justice sciences.
news release received from Todd Kober, associate athletics
director, athletics communications, Illinois State University]