What's in a name? To Jay Cyrciac there is respect, opportunity, and a place of employment. The New Jersey native is Seward's new assistant men's basketball coach under Bryan Zollinger, an occupation he greets with open arms. "It's a magnet," Cyriac says of Seward. "Seward Community College has a reputation not only here (in Liberal) but everywhere else. When I've called places in Texas and elsewhere, Seward has a name. A lot of it has to do with the tradition of success of past coaches and the success of coach Zollinger."
Cyriac grew up near the homes of Saint legends like Devonne Giles and Carlo and Shelby Walton.
Cyriac has been working in the private sector for New York Knick Al Harrington. "He had started a few businesses," Cyriac said. "He wanted me to oversee his business ventures. It was a chance to move back to New Jersey where my family is."
Before the move back to Jersey, Cyriac was a division 1 assistant at South Alabama for current Arkansas coach John Pelphrey. Seward Lady Saint assistant Penny Jones coached at South Alabama during that time. Cyriac also worked with the athletic director at the school in Mobile during a time when they added football.
Cyriac has also scouted for the Philadelphia 76ers.
He is familiar with junior college. He was an assistant at College of Southern Idaho from 1999-2003. He also coached AAU during the summer in New Jersey. He's had four NBA first round picks including Harrington go through his AAU program. So with such an expansive basketball resume, why take the job at Seward? "I had known coach Zollinger back when I was at Southern Idaho," Cyriac said. "He was back at the College of Eastern Utah and we got along well. It was a very competitive league. There were some coaches who weren't friendly and some who were friendly. Coach Z. had always been one of those guys who was friendly. We always exchanged tape and was very welcoming when we came to their place. I always respected his Eastern Utah teams because they were disciplined and fundamentally sound."
Cyriac moved to Liberal last week. He replaces Ryan Stock who takes an assistant coaching job at Pittsburg State. The Saints were 24-9 this year.