Northern Michigan University adds decorated NAIA coach Charlie Wallrapp of Clarke University in Iowa as men’s basketball assistant

Charlie Wallrapp

MARQUETTE — Head coach Matt Majkrzak and the Northern Michigan University men’s basketball program recently hired a new assistant coach.

Joining former Wildcats player Naba Echols as an assistant coach is Charlie Wallrapp, who coached the past two seasons at NAIA member Clarke University of Dubuque, Iowa, according to an NMU sports news release.

Last season, the Pride recorded a school-record 24 wins and a berth in the NAIA Division I tournament for the first time in program history after reaching their first-ever Heart of America Athletic Conference championship game. The team, under sixth-year head coach Jim Blaine, also ranked as high as No. 22 for their first national ranking in program history, too.

For his part, Wallrapp was named to the 2020 Under Armour 30-Under-30 Team by the National Association of Basketball Coaches as one of the nation’s outstanding college men’s basketball coaches at any level under age 30. The list included coaches from NCAA Division I schools like Butler, Louisville, Marquette and Harvard and Division II such as Grand Valley State in the GLIAC.

In his first year at Clarke, the Pride won three times over top-15 teams, including one over a top-10 team for the first time in program history as the team improved from 10th to fourth in its conference.

Before Clarke, Wallrapp spent two season as an assistant at another NAIA institution, Kansas Wesleyan University of Salina, Kansas. Playing a large role in the Coyotes’ defensive strategy, Wallrapp helped them finish 14th nationally and second in its conference in scoring defense, and also helped player Terell Gandy earn conference Defensive Player of the Year honors. During his first season, the team nearly doubled its win total of the previous season from seven to 13 wins before his second season produced a 16-win campaign.

Previous to Kansas Wesleyan, he was an assistant high school coach at Max My Game Academy in Orlando, Florida, in 2014-15, when he coached more than 30 players who went to play at the Division I level. He was also an AAU assistant coach in Nebraska for a pair of teams in 2011.

In his playing days, Wallrapp was a two-time NAIA All-American for Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, where he was also a two-time team captain. A three-time Heart of America Athletic Conference all-league player, he finished his career there 11th all-time in scoring with 1,438 career points, leading the Ravens in both scoring and rebounding his final three years. His efforts helped the program to a conference championship in 2013-14 and an NAIA national tournament appearance for the first time in 45 years, making it to the Sweet 16.

He then went on to play for Newcastle Knights in England and averaged 22 points per game while leading the squad to a 40-3 record and a number of championships.

Wallrapp earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Benedictine in 2014 and a Masters of Business Administration from Kansas Wesleyan in 2018.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.


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