Ed Streit didn’t waste any time. Once the University of Dayton’s human resources department informed him his hiring was official on June 28, he walked to the Olsen Athletics Performance Center and got to work as the Dayton Flyers men’s basketball strength and conditioning coach.
Streit found Dayton forward Ryan Mikesell working with another strength coach, Jared Phillips.
“Let’s do this,” Streit said.
Streit, a 29-year-old Chicago native who grew up not far from Dayton forward Josh Cunningham, got to work right away. That’s what he learned to do in the NBA. He spent three years as a strength and conditioning associate coach with the Chicago Bulls earlier in his career
“An internship with the Bulls turned into a full-time job,” Streit said, “and I could not pass on that. The Bulls have always had a special place in my heart and still do. It was really cool to work with the home team.”
While many of his philosophies come from that stretch in his career, Streit has plenty of experience in the college game as well. He worked at Arizona State and DePaul earlier in his career and spent last season at Connecticut, working with the men’s basketball team. After the coaching change — Dan Hurley replaced Kevin Ollie — Streit pursued the job in Dayton.
“The interview process was pretty cool,” Streit said. “(Anthony Grant) said they were going to move fast, and they did. It was a pretty intense interview process. I got to meet with the players on my interview: four or five guys. Speaking to them helped me big time just to get a feel for the culture. They had great questions.”
The players wanted to know if Streit was a drill-sergeant type.
“I am not a screamer,” Streit said. “In basketball, no one really loves to lift weights. There are a couple guys who do. Usually, they’re body-builders. In the basketball culture, the weight room almost gets a negative deal. Guys don’t really enjoy lifting. What I try to do is not be the drill sergeant and make them hate it even more. I try to explain why what we’re doing is beneficial, how it’s going to make them better, keep them healthy and keep them on the court and prolong their playing careers.”
Casey Cathrall, who was Dayton’s strength coach for one year before he left for the University of Miami, provided Streit an early assist by talking to him about each of the players. Trainer Mike Mulcahey also helped Streit by going over the injury histories of the players.
Then Streit did his own tests with the players to see where they are and what they can do. He learned most of his testing drills through the Bulls, who still lean on the philosophies of former strength coach Al Vermeil, who worked for the franchise for decades throughout the Michael Jordan years.
“I do believe strength fixes a lot of problems,” Streit said, “but a big thing, too, is reducing injuries. Strength plays a big role in that. If you’re strong and familiar with certain positions you’re put into on the court and you’re able to handle the forces you’re exposed to and also distribute them properly, then you’re probably setting yourself up for success. That’s a big thing we do in the weight room: just try to prepare them for the forces they’re going to encounter out there. Sometimes a jump can be seven times your body weight as far as the forces. We’re just really preparing them for that.”
» SCHEDULE NEWS: Dayton to open season on a Wednesday
Streit works with a group of 11 scholarship players plus three walk-ons. He said everyone is in great shape and moving well. He thanked Cathrall for putting him in a good spot and Phillips for holding down the fort until he was officially hired.
A typical week for Streit and the Flyers includes four days of lifting: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. They also condition on Wednesday and Thursday.
“Right now, this early in the offseason, we’re just trying to work on aerobic fitness,” Streit said. “We think of performance as a pyramid, and we’re trying to build the base of that pyramid. The bigger the base, the higher we’ll be able to peak.”
Thank you for reading the Dayton Daily News and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Dayton Daily News. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.