A Message from the President: The Next Era of Villanova Men’s Basketball
April 20, 2022
Dear Members of the Villanova Community,
We would like to start by expressing our immense gratitude to Jay Wright, who today announced his retirement from coaching, for his incredible leadership of Villanova Men’s Basketball for the past 21 years. He has led our storied program with class, humility and grace, leaving an indelible impact on this community.
Jay’s legacy at Villanova extends well beyond the numerous awards, accolades and championships. He will be forever known to our community as Villanova’s winningest coach, who did things the “Wright” way, guiding, developing and empowering the student-athletes who played for him to not only be better on the basketball court but also in their personal lives. Jay taught us all the true meaning of “ATTITUDE,” so, on behalf of everyone associated with Villanova Basketball, we would like to express our overwhelming “GRATITUDE” for everything he has done for Villanova.
Jay and his wife, Patty, have always been tremendous ambassadors for the University and our Augustinian mission by embodying what it means to be a Villanovan: selfless, humble and caring while being driven, determined and competitive. Villanova is a better University for Jay being a part of it, which is why we are delighted that he has agreed to stay on at Villanova as Special Assistant to the President. In this role, Jay will be involved in fundraising, advising, education and more for the University.
Over the past two decades, Jay and his staff have built an enviable, world-class basketball program at Villanova. When looking for a successor, we wanted a candidate who could provide continuity for what Jay has built, and who could navigate the changing landscape of collegiate athletics keeping Villanova in a position of strength—now and in the future. After meeting with several exceptional candidates, we found all those attributes and more in Villanova’s new William B. Finneran Endowed Head Coach, Kyle Neptune.
Kyle quickly stood out for his basketball knowledge, recruiting savvy and natural ability to connect with student-athletes and coaches. He most recently served as the head coach of Fordham University. Prior to Fordham, Kyle served two stints on Jay’s staff over the course of a decade. While an assistant coach at Villanova, the team averaged 30.7 wins per season and captured five BIG EAST regular-season tournament titles and a pair of NCAA national championships. A native of Brooklyn, New York, Kyle played four seasons of college basketball at Lehigh University.
Please join us in congratulating Kyle and welcoming him back to Villanova. He is eager to get started and return to the Villanova community. Also, in the months ahead, we will come together to honor Jay and Patty and recognize his more than two decades as the Head Coach of Villanova Men’s Basketball. More to come on that, but as we say, it’s a great day to be a Wildcat!
Rev. Peter M. Donohue, OSA
Vice President and Director of Athletics