Pat Todd was recently named boys basketball coach at Umatilla, replacing Brian Morris who led the Bulldogs for the past four years. He’s taking over a program that finished 10-15 last season and has not posted a winning record since going 14-10 in 2012-13.
UMATILLA — Pat Todd has won nearly 500 games as a high school and college basketball coach.
He led the Leesburg and Eustis boys teams and the Mount Dora Christian Academy — then known as Mount Dora Bible — girls team into the FHSAA playoffs before making the leap to Florida College, where he led the men’s and women’s team into the postseason.
Now, he’s back in Lake County.
Todd was recently named boys basketball coach at Umatilla, replacing Brian Morris who led the Bulldogs for the past four years. He’s taking over a program that finished 10-15 last season and has not posted a winning record since going 14-10 in 2012-13.
“Umatilla High School is extremely proud to have coach Todd as our new varsity boys coach,” said Umatilla Athletic Director Deta Brunson. “We are lucky to have found a coach with as much coaching experience and leadership quality as coach Todd. I am hoping (he) will help establish loyalty back to our sports teams and continue to help build our programs.
“I believe he will be a great addition to the diligent coaching staff that we have for all our sports.”
Todd stepped down last month as athletic director and men’s basketball coach at Florida College, located near Tampa in Temple Terrace. During his six years at Florida College, Todd served as AD, men’s coach for five season and two as women’s coach.
In two of those seasons, Todd coached both programs simultaneously, while tending to his duties as AD. He also guided the college in its transition to the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics.
“I am so happy to be back coaching again in Lake County,” said Todd. “My wife, who is a teacher at Lake Minneola, and I have been talking about me transitioning back to Lake County for about three years now. We live in Fruitland Park and I’ve been driving to the Tampa area every day for the last six years.
“I enjoyed my time working and coaching at the college level, but I missed teaching and coaching at the high school level.”
Todd carries a career coaching record of 498-195 with him to Umatilla. And he’ll adding to an already impressive resume of experience in Lake County.
He enjoyed considerable success in four seasons as head coach at Leesburg, compiling a 103-28 record before stepping down following the 1999-2000 season. Todd also coached one season at Eustis — 2001-2002 — leading the Panthers to an 18-12 mark.
Todd’s longest stint was at Mount Dora Bible — now known as Mount Dora Christian Academy — where he coached the girls program from 2003 until 2012.
At Umatilla, one of Todd’s biggest challenges will be changing the mindset of the student-athletes in the community. Many of the school’s athletic programs have struggled in recent years, largely because countless student-athletes have transferred to other area schools.
School officials hope Todd’s reputation for winning and his connections at the next level will convince student-athletes to remain at Umatilla.
“I’m passionate about basketball and I can teach the game,” said Todd. “I developed a lot of contacts when I was Florida College that I think can help me get our student-athletes into college. Umatilla is such a great community with some outstanding players and I really believe if we can keep our kids here, all of our sports programs can be successful and competitive.”
In addition to his coaching duties, Brunson said Todd also will be a member of Umatilla’s teaching staff.