Apr 21, 2013 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports EditorThe two will be at CWC this week for campus interviews and presentations.
Shelby Lindley and Pat Rafferty are the two finalists from 89 applicants for the Central Wyoming College men's basketball head-coaching position.
Lindley was named the interim CWC head coach in October after Curtis Condie was terminated during preseason practice.
Rafferty is now the director of basketball operation at the University of Texas Arlington.
CWC officials announced the finalists Friday afternoon.
"It's great that we have that many people interested in CWC and in our community," CWC assistant dean for student services Steve Barlow said. "We were able to look through them, and we had some very good applicants. We were very excited about that. We need somebody who will fit in and lead our program with our mission and values."
The 24-year-old Lindley says he is youngest college basketball head coach in the United States. The Rustlers finished with a 23-7 overall record last season with Lindley calling the shots. CWC placed third in the Region IX men's North division behind Casper College and Sheridan College.
CWC went 1-1 in the Region IX postseason tournament at Casper College. The Rustlers were knocked out in overtime by Otero Junior College.
CWC also was successful in the classroom last semester. Lindley helped the Rustlers finish the season with a grade-point average of 3.2. Six sophomores are planning to graduate in May.
Lindley also has worked at Idaho State University, Northwest Nazarene University in Nampa, Idaho, and at the College of Southern Idaho in Twin Falls.
The other finalist applied for the CWC position with an overall junior college head-coaching record of 291-196 on his resume. He has been the head coach at Grayson College in Dennison, Texas, Midland College and Casper College.
Rafferty was the head coach at Grayson College for nine seasons, but the school dropped the men's and women's basketball programs due to budget cuts.
Rafferty also was an assistant coach at the University of Louisville under coach Denny Crum.
Louisville recently won the NCAA men's title this year after beating Michigan in the championship game. Crum retired some years ago.
In his career, Rafferty also was a NBA scout for two seasons with the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Rafferty graduated from Buffalo High School.
Rafferty and Lindley will be on the CWC campus this week for presentations and interviews.
"It will be their chance to showcase what they have done," Barlow said.
"They can talk about what they want to do and what they believe in. It will give the community an opportunity to come up and see them."
Rafferty will give his public presentation on 10:15 a.m. Thursday at the CWC's Little Theater in the student center.
"I'm excited for it, and the community should be excited for it," Barlow said.
Lindley is set to give his at 10 a.m. Friday in the same place. After the two presentations, Barlow said the selection committee will get together to get the new coach hired.
"We will try to get it done as quickly as we can," Barlow said. "We don't want to drag it out. They don't want to drag it out. We want to make a decision."
Barlow said the current CWC players are anxious to get a permanent coach put in place for next season.
"We have returners, and kids want to know who their coach is going to be," Barlow said. "We have people that need to be recruited. We will do it as quickly as we can."
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