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Pepperdine Appoints Ed Schilling as Men’s Basketball Head Coach

Brings winning track record including conference titles and NCAA Tournament appearances



Ed Schilling

MALIBU, California – Pepperdine University has appointed coaching and player development veteran Ed Schilling to serve as the Head Coach of the Waves men’s basketball program. During his 13 years as an assistant at UMass, Memphis, UCLA, Indiana and Grand Canyon, his teams went a combined 304-134 and participated in eight NCAA Tournaments—including appearances in the Final Four and Sweet 16.

“Throughout his decorated tenure at GCU and in the years prior, Coach Schilling has demonstrated the highest levels of leadership in player development and preparedness for the rigors of collegiate and professional basketball,” said Pepperdine president Jim Gash in a message to the community. “His extensive coaching experience throughout his career has exemplified the visionary leadership, strategic thinking, adaptability, and emotional intelligence required to navigate the world of college athletics. I look forward to a new era of Pepperdine basketball under Coach Schilling’s leadership.”

Schilling most recently served at Grand Canyon University (GCU) as an assistant coach for the men’s basketball program. During Schilling’s first season at GCU, the program won its first conference title and qualified for its first NCAA Tournament in 2021. The team went on to claim the 2023 and 2024 Western Athletic Conference title and made three total appearances in the NCAA tournament. Prior to coaching at GCU, Schilling served as an assistant coach at Indiana University Bloomington from 2017 to 2019 and at UCLA from 2013 to 2017. During his tenure at UCLA, the Bruins compiled a 96-45 overall record, made three Sweet Sixteen appearances (2014, 2015, and 2017), and sent nine players to the NBA.

“I am thrilled and appreciative to start this new chapter as the head coach for the men's basketball team at Pepperdine University,” Schilling said. “The University's prestigious academic reputation, beautiful campus, and the passionate vision for basketball success from President Gash, Tim Perrin, and Tanner Gardner make this opportunity a remarkable blessing.”

Prior to his impressive experience in collegiate and professional basketball, Schilling, a Lebanon, Indiana, native, coached high school basketball at Park Tudor School, Western Boone Junior-Senior High School, and Logansport High School in his home state. Schilling also coached the Adidas High School All-American Team in various national and international competitions and was a director and trainer at the Champions Academy in Indianapolis, Indiana. Schilling has an extensive background in player development and, from 2007 to 2013, trained more than 60 players per year at St. Vincent’s Sports Performance and its NBA readiness program, where he prepared high-profile young players for the NBA draft.

As a student-athlete, Schilling was a four-year starting point guard and a two-time captain at Miami University in Ohio from 1985 to 1988. At Miami, Schilling helped lead the team to two NCAA Tournament appearances and was a three-time academic all-conference selection. He also established single-game, season, and career assist records at Miami University, all of which are still standing.

The Pepperdine men’s basketball program completed its 86th season in 2023–24 and the 51st year playing in the historic Firestone Fieldhouse. The Waves have been to the NCAA Tournament 13 times and have won 12 West Coast Conference regular-season titles, three WCC Tournament crowns, and the College Basketball Invitational title in 2021. Thirty-three former Pepperdine players have gone on to be selected on NBA Draft nights over the years, with Maxwell Lewis being the most recent Wave to enter the pros when he was selected to the Los Angeles Lakers in 2023. 

“We are excited to welcome Coach Schilling to the Pepperdine family,” incoming director of athletics Tanner Gardner said. “I look forward to partnering with him to chart a bright future for Pepperdine men’s basketball.”

Schilling succeeds Lorenzo Romar, who served as the head coach of the Waves’ men’s basketball program from 2018 to 2024 and previously from 1996 to 1999. 

About Pepperdine Athletics
Pepperdine University Athletics is committed to the athletic, academic, and personal development of student-athletes who compete with purpose at the Division I level in 17 sports. Boasting 10 NCAA team championships, 16 other national championships, and countless West Coast Conference wins, Pepperdine Waves demonstrate the University’s core principles of purpose, service, and leadership guided by Christian values both on and off the playing field. One of the highest-ranked West Coast Conference schools by the U.S. News & World Report, Pepperdine’s student-athletes are consistently recognized for their success in the classroom.


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