Charlie Ernst will be entering his third season at the helm of the Oilers men’s basketball program in 2013-14.
During the 2012-13 season, Ernst led the Oilers to a 22-8 record with a 16-6 mark in the GLIAC. He guided the Oilers to a GLIAC South Division title and also captured the GLIAC Tournament championship with a 75-69 win over Lake Superior State University on March 10 in Houghton, Mich. The Oilers win marked the first time a school in the GLIAC had won back-to-back tournament titles on the road and their seventh overall title put them ahead of Grand Valley State University for the most in league history. The Oilers also qualified for the NCAA Division II Tournament, but were upended in the first round by Drury University, who eventually won the national championship.
In his first year as a head coach during the 2011-12 campaign, Ernst went 24-7 with a 14-5 record in GLIAC play. He guided the Oilers to their sixth GLIAC Tournament title, which was the first away from the friendly confines of Croy Gymnasium, with a 71-52 win over Hillsdale College on March 4, 2012. The Oilers then reached the NCAA Division II Tournament, before falling in the second round to Bellarmine University.
Ernst earned his first collegiate victory as a head coach on November 12, 2011, winning 92-62 against Ohio Valley University in Croy Gymnasium.
Ernst was named the Oilers head basketball coach on Tuesday, March 30, 2011, taking over for retired Ron Niekamp. Ernst had served as Niekamp’s assistant for 20 years before his promotion.
Ernst has been associated with some of the best teams in school history. His tutelege on the defensive side of the ball has allowed the Oilers to become the most successful team in terms of winning percentage at the NCAA Division II level since the year 2000.
During the 2008-09 campaign, Ernst, serving as the associate head coach, helped lead the Oilers to the best season in NCAA Division II history. The Oilers finished the season with a perfect 36-0 record en route to a NCAA Division II National Championship.
For his efforts during the Oilers magical run to a championship, Ernst was selected as a “Rising Star” award winner, meaning he was one of five coaches in the NCAA to be named Assistant Coach of the Year. He was the only NCAA Division II coach on the list.
Ernst was also a vital cog in helping the Oilers achieve ten GLIAC South Division regular season championships (1998, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011) and five GLIAC Tournament titles (2004, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2010) during his career as an assistant for Ron Niekamp.
The Oilers, with Ernst on the sideline as a head coach and assistant, sport a 25-6 record in the GLIAC Tournament and a 15-8 record in the NCAA Division II Tournament, which includes an Elite Eight berth in 2005 and a Sweet 16 appearance in 2008.
In addition to his in-season coaching, Ernst founded the UF Cager Club which serves as both a fundraising arm and booster club for the men’s basketball program. It has grown each year and currently boasts over 180 members with a dollar amount of over $12,000.
Ernst also remains extremely busy in the summer months. He directs the UF Oiler Basketball team camps. This past year, 190 schools participated in the four sessions (junior varsity and varsity) from three states. The Oilers team camp is considered one of the largest and best camps in Ohio. The camps also serve as a great recruiting tool for Findlay.
In addition to his coaching responsibilities while he was an assistant to Niekamp, Ernst also served as the director of athletic marketing and promotions at The University of Findlay and has been involved in the Oilers Athletic Hall of Fame during his tenure at UF.
Ernst graduated from The University of Findlay in 1992 with a bachelor’s degree in public relations and marketing. He holds a master’s degree in education from Findlay as well.
While at Findlay, Ernst was a varsity letter-winner in both basketball and golf.
A native of Minster, Ohio, Ernst was a three-year letterman and two-time team MVP for Minster High School. He was also a two-time all-Midwest Athletic Conference selection and was named honorable mention all-Ohio during during his career.
Ernst resides in Findlay with his wife, Belinda, and their daughter, Allison, and son, Sam.
Dan Shardo is entering his eighth season with The University of Findlay’s men’s basketball team. The 2013-14 campaign will mark the seventh year of Shardo serving as an assistant coach on the Oilers staff and the third as their top assistant.
Shardo’s responsibilities during the season include working with wings and post players, game film editing, scouting and supervising the conditioning and weight lifting programs.
Shardo also serves as the director of marketing at UF as well.
Prior to his arrival at Findlay, Shardo served as an assistant coach at Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana. Along with his on the court coaching instruction, Shardo was also involved with practice planning, recruiting and game preparation at Earlham.
Before entering the college scene, Shardo was an assistant coach at his alma mater, Versailles High School, for one year and was the varsity boy’s head coach for two years at Mississinawa Valley High School.
During his collegiate career, Shardo was a four-year starter at Wilmington College. He was voted team captain and MVP twice and is ranked in the top ten in all-time scoring as well as being the all-time leader in three pointers made. He graduated from Wilmington College with his bachelor’s degree in education and later earned his master’s degree in education from Marygrove College.
Shardo resides in Findlay with his wife, Rebecca, and children, Samantha, Nathan and Cameron.
Dave Krauss is entering his sixth season with the Oilers in 2013-14 after a very successful high school coaching career which spanned 27 years.
Krauss totaled a 365-227 record in the prep ranks and won an Ohio state championship in 1997 at Patrick Henry High School. He also led Patrick Henry to a runner-up finish during the 1992 campaign.
As a high school coach, Krauss won six league championships, 17 sectional titles, four district championships and two regional crowns. He was inducted into the Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 2008 and also served as the president of the group in 1997 and again in 1998.
A graduate of Kent State University where he played baseball for four years, Krauss later earned his master’s degree in education at the University of Toledo.
Krauss lives in Deshler, Ohio with his wife, Jenny. They are the parents of three sons; Kyle, Eric and Marc.
Dustin Pfeifer is entering his second year as a graduate assistant coach for the Oilers men’s basketball team in 2013-14.
Pfeifer was a NCAA Division II All-American for the Oilers in 2006 and ranks tenth on the all-time scoring list with 1,590 points.
During his career at Findlay, Pfeifer was a two-time, first team all-GLIAC pick and was tabbed the 2006 GLIAC Player of the Year. He also earned first team all-region honors twice and was the 2003 GLIAC Freshman of the Year.
Pfeifer holds school records for most assists in a career (561), most assists in a season (171), most steals in a career (328), most steals in a season (92) and most three pointers made in a game (9).
After his playing days at Findlay, Pfeifer enjoyed a stellar professional playing career. He began his professional career with the Columbus Cyclones in 2006. He then played the 2006-07 season in the first league in Denmark, where he received honors as the Guard of the Year. From 2007-08 he played in the Germany Pro A and moved up to the top division in the league. In 2008-09, he finished second in the Germany Pro A in both assists and steals. Pfeifer then capped his career by playing in the Czech Republic during the 2009-10 season.