Josh Pelletier has dealt with competition his whole life.
The son of a former football coach, each of Pelletier's three brothers and sisters received full scholarships to play college basketball (both sisters playing at the Division I level).
With that kind of background, Pelletier is no newcomer to the game, despite this being just his 2nd season working with the University at Albany as a graduate assistant.
Part of his day-to-day responsibilities entail managing film exchange video production with respect to individual workouts, practices and games. In addition, he has duties with travel, on-campus recruitment and supervising student managers.
The 6'4" Pelletier played basketball at the College of St. Rose here in Albany from 2005-2009, where he was a guard/forward, and did most of his damage from the wing—though he was a solid rebounder and passer as well.
Pelletier uses his own personal experiences as a player to help out with the current members of the UAlbany team.
Pelletier says that the best game he ever played occurred when he was in high school. “I went to LaSalle Institute and we were playing (arch-rival) Christian Brothers Academy for the third time that year, and they had beaten us badly the first two times. This was a sectional final game, and we really wanted to win, and we ended up pulling it out. Plus, I scored 25 points in the game, which made the victory even sweeter.” Pelletier would go on to finish his high school career with 1,504 points, the all-time LaSalle record.
Basketball was not the only sport Pelletier played in high school. He played football as well—quarterback to be exact—but it was his actions at another position that will keep him in the record books for a long time.
“I punted a little bit, we had a trick play formation, and I was terrible at it, but one night, we were playing a game with heavy winds. On one punt, I had the wind at my back and kicked one 77 yards, though some of that came after it bounced and rolled. Later in the game, I was punting into the wind, and the ball basically went straight up, landed three yards in front of the line of scrimmage, then bounced backwards. That punt went negative two yards. So I had the school record for longest punt and shortest punt in the same game."
Playing under the legendary coach Bryan Beaury at St. Rose, who had won 517 career games as of the 2010-2011 season, one humorous lesson imparted from his former coach stands apart from the rest.
“There are two things in life that will eventually die: dogs that chase cars and defenses that let the ball go middle (into the paint).”
Beaury might be a great coach, but he isn’t Pelletier’s favorite. That honor belongs to the legendary John Wooden, “The effect he had on the game is still relevant in the way teams play the game today, all these years later. Plus, he has more championships than any other coach, and championships are always nice.”
Pelletier majored in adolescence education at St. Rose and says if he wasn’t coaching, he’d like to teach social studies at the middle school/high school level, but that isn’t his dream.
“In 10 years, I would like to be a college basketball coach. I would love to be a head coach, but 10 years might be a bit too soon. That might take a little more time.”