Former Dowling College men’s basketball coach John Mateyko has been named coach and athletic director for the new intercollegiate program at Five Towns College in Dix Hills, acting president David Cohen said Tuesday.
Mateyko, 58, said he received a termination letter from Dowling, where he coached the last two seasons, as the college trimmed personnel while struggling to remain open because of financial difficulties. Before Dowling, Mateyko spent 13 years at St. Joseph’s in Patchogue, where he guided the team to two NCAA Division III postseason berths.
It is possible some of Mateyko’s players from D-II Dowling could join him at Five Towns. “We had three or four of the younger kids who were freshmen and sophomores,’’ he said. “We’re trying to see what their situation is. It wasn’t like we could pull a whole team over unfortunately.’’
Mateyko’s first task is formulating a schedule for basketball, which will not apply for NCAA affiliation until the school sponsors the required 12 sports. Women’s basketball is next. Facilities also are in place for volleyball and soccer.
“I would leave it to John to articulate the vision,’’ Cohen said. “We’ll be behind him 100 percent in whichever direction he believes is the right one for our school to go.”
Five Towns had a men’s basketball team in 2000, Cohen said, but it disbanded after the NCAA announced a moratorium on admitting new schools. Five Towns will not offer athletic scholarships. Mateyko estimates a three-to-five-year plan for joining Division III and hopes to join the Skyline Conference with local opponents Farmingdale, Old Westbury and St. Joseph’s.
While Five Towns confers degrees in business, education and media, the school is best known for performing arts and music. Two of the school’s former students were Adam Levine and Jesse Carmichael of the Grammy Award-winning group Maroon 5.
The teams at Five Towns will be called the Sound.
“I’m not sure we’re going to have the most winningest teams,’’ Cohen said. “But I promise you we will have the best halftime shows in the region.’’