John Pigatti — Head Coach
Photo of John Pigatti Coach Pigatti is in his 8th year as head coach of the Bulldogs and has accumulated a tremendous career coaching record of 205-41. In 2012-13, his team finished 32-5 and placed 6th at the NJCAA National Championship Tournament. The year before his team broke the school record for wins by going 33-4. They finished 3rd at the NJCAA National Championships, which was the highest finish in school history. Coach Pigatti has set numerous records as a head coach. He is the only coach in history (including NCAA, NAIA, and NJCAA) that has had five 1st Team All Americans in his first seven years as a head coach (he has had 6 total All-Americans in 7 years). He has won 5 Region IV-A Championships, his teams have been to five NJCAA Division II National Championships in seven years. His teams have also been ranked #1 in the country. For the first time in school’s history they appeared in three straight NJCAA Division II National Championships during 2007-2009. He has had 4 teams finish with 30+ wins in his 7 years as a head coach (which also is the first time that was been done in school’s history). His teams have also been ranked in the top ten every season since he has been at South Suburban College.
Pigatti also knows how to win on his home court. He has complied at 105-5 home record during his seven seasons at South Suburban College. From February 2007-November 2009, Pigatti‘s teams also set another record; as they compiled a 34-game home winning streak. During that streak his teams had 2 straight seasons going undefeated at home. Pigatti has been named the 2013, 2012, 2009, 2008, and 2007 Coach-of-the Year in Region IV-A, District 4, and by the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association.
More importantly all of Pigatti‘s sophomores he recruited have signed a scholarship to play at a 4-year college or university. The five 1st Team All-American are: Michael Harris (’13), James Harris (’11), Tremell Adams (’10) Nick Carey (’09), and Kris Harris (’07). He also has had five MVP’s of the Regional IV-A Tournament: Michael Harris (2013 & 2012) Bradley Birton (’09), Larry Swann (’08), and Kris Harris (’07).
Coach Pigatti came to SSC from St. Francis University in Loretto, PA where he was the head assistant men's basketball coach and recruiting coordinator. At St. Francis, Pigatti was an integral part of signing the number one recruiting class in the Northeast Conference. Also, the 2004-05 season record was the school's best in 8 years.
Pigatti helped lead Kent State to a 22-9 final record in 2003-04, a Mid-American Conference (MAC) Eastern Division championship and a berth in the National Invitational Tournament (NIT).
Prior to his one-year stint at Kent State, Pigatti served as an assistant coach at Elmhurst College-IL (1987-89), Creighton University (1989-91), Texas A&M University (1991-92), Western Michigan University (1992-94), Saint Joseph's College-IN (1994-95), the University of Akron (1995-01), and Chicago State University (2002-03).
During Pigatti's tenure as an assistant at Akron, the Zips captured the most MAC wins for any team in the league from 1997-01, including a MAC Eastern Division title in 1998. He helped recruit two Mr. Basketball award winners, including Jimmal Ball, who was voted one of the top 15 freshman players in the country by USA today and ESPN. At Creighton University, he helped lead the Blue jays to back to back 20 win seasons. Creighton also won the MVC title and advanced to the second round of the NCAA tourney. He is also the head coach of the Five Star Basketball Camp, where he instructed several top 100 high school players in the country.
A 1985 graduate of the University of Dayton with a bachelor's degree in business administration, Pigatti earned a masters degree of business administration from Creighton in 1993. He served as President of the National Assistant Basketball Coaches Committee for six years (1996-01). Pigatti and his wife, Kimberly, have a daughter Ashley Jo, and a son, Andrew John.
Mark Carpenter — Assistant Coach
Photo of Mark Carpenter Coach “Carp” is in his 10th season as an assistant coach at South Suburban College, and his fourth under Coach Pigatti. Mark is a former Bulldog player who led the 1986 team to a 31-4 record, while during that year setting a school record for consecutive victories at 21. That team also finished 3rd at the National Tournament.
Mark was named as the team’s MVP and also collected 1st Team All Conference, and 2nd Team All-Region honors that year. Mark also set the school’s all-time season assists record at 432, which was good for a 12.3 assist per game average.
Mark continued his collegiate playing career at the University of Alaska-Anchorage. During his junior season at UAA, the team participated in the NCAA Division II National Tournament, and got all the way to the championship game before losing, At UAA, Carp tied the record for most games played in one season at 34.
Mark has been married 14 years to Jacqueline, and has for children: Myah, Ashanti, Jiovane, and Marquise.
Omar Vasquez — Assistant Coach
Photo of Omar Vasquez Omar was the Head Boys Basketball Coach at William A. Wirt H.S. Indiana from 1990-2009. At Wirt he won over 215 games, had 50+ players go on to play at the college level, including 10 DI players and 3 top 50 JC All American Honorees. He led Wirt High school to Several Upsets of top ranked teams including the #1 Team in the State and #9 team in the country Warsaw H.S. in 1993. Coach Vasquez also led his teams to the Final 8 in 2007 3A tournament, four sectional finals, Several Northwestern Conference titles and a NWC Holiday Title. He holds the school record for most wins at Wirt High School. He also was named the Northwest Indiana All-Star game head coach in 1996. From 2006-2009 he was a member of the Indiana Junior Basketball Showcase coaching staff, which featured the state’s best underclassmen.
His coaching career started as the Student Assistant at the University of Dayton (NCAA), under legendary Don Donoher. Dayton lost in first round of 1984 NCAA tournament to eventual NCAA National Champion Villanova, in which was considered the most difficult game Villanova played during the Tournament.
After college he went to San Jose High School Varsity and J.V. Coach. There is teams won two Commonwealth State Titles in 1983 & 1984. His most renowned player was Center Ramon Ramos who eventually led Seton Hall to the NCAA title game in 1989.
Coach Vasquez has also worked at several scouting services camps such as Five Star, Metro Index and Blue Chip.
Coach Vazquez is married to Laura Medina, a former Puerto Rican beauty queen. They have three children; Marie (25) an IPFW speech therapist student, Andrew (19) an Army veteran deployed in Iraq and Laurie (13).
He presently works as a Health/P.E. teacher with the Gary Community School Corporation and is a University of Dayton graduate (1985).
Aubrey "Coach 'V'" Volious — Assistant Coach
Photo of Aubry Volious Aubrey “Coach V” Volious comes to South Suburban College with 24 years of coaching experience in men’s college basketball.
Before joining to Coach Pigatti's staff, Coach V spent 13 seasons (1997 to 2010) as Associate Head Coach at Robert Morris University (Chicago) (NAIA). During that time, RMU's record was 356-92 and graduated over 87% of the players. Coach V recruited every player in the program except for three. While at Robert Morris University, the team enjoyed being ranked #1 in the nation (NAIA) 13 times. In addition, he helped his team reach the NAIA National Tournament (2000); Final Four 2002, 2005-07, 2009, 2010; National Runner-up 2002; Sweet Sixteen 2004 and the Elite Eight 2008.
Coach V has many successes under his belt by helping the Eagles become Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) winning the CCAC Championship in 1998, 2000, 2002, 2003-05, 2007-10 and CCAC Tournament Championship 2000, 2002, 2004-09.
Coach V has coached seven CCAC Conference Players of the Year: Kenny Davis (97-98); Bobby Smith (01-02); Carlos Hurt (03-04) and (04-05); Melvin Council (06-07); Othyus Jeffers (07-08); Co-Players of the Year in 2009-10: Robert Jones and former Bulldog Billy Rush. Rush was a Region IV-A All-Region First Team in 2008. He has coached 14 NAIA All-Americans.
from 1993 to 1997, he served as Head Coach at (NJCAA) Malcolm X College (MXC) with a record of 67-46 with 61 of those games on the road. During his years at MXC, he graduated over 92% of his players, and coached 3 NJCAA All Americans: Kenny Davis (94-95); 1995-96 NJCAA leading rebounder Eddie Washington; and Johnnie Blake, 1995-96 NJCAA leading scorer. Coach V led MXC to Region Four Champions in 1995-96 and was named NJCAA Region Four Coach of the Year.
He worked with NIKE Foundation of Student Athletes in Chicago (1990-1993), Assistant Coach at Chicago State University (NCAA Div 1) from 1988 – 1990; Assistant Men's Coach at Triton College (1984-1988); and also was the Assistant Women’s Coach from 1986-1987.
In twenty four years of coaching college basketball, he has been blessed to have coached players like 2008-09 NBDL Rookie of the Year and the Utah Jazz player Othyus Jeffers and current Harlem Globetrotters Anthony Smith and Jimmy Miles. Forty of his players have played overseas, in the CBA, PBL, and the ABA.
In 2005, Coach V was inducted in the Chicago Public League Basketball Hall of Fame. In 2010, he was inducted into the Robert Morris University (Chicago) Athletic Hall of Fame for men’s basketball team 1999-2000 season.
Coach V graduated in 1981 from Iowa State University with a bachelor’s degree of Science in Physical Education and received his master’s of science degree in Physical Education from Chicago State University in 1990.
A native of Buffalo, New York, Coach V and his wife Sherri have 6 children; Koby, Markita, Gary, Jerod, Tené and Ashley; and four grandsons.