Marvin "Bud" Hamilton g68


Marvin "Bud" Hamilton '68 came to Summit Christian College (SCC) as the Christian Service Director, but was quickly asked to consider becoming the Men's Basketball Coach and Director of Athletics. He assumed both positions for the 1991-92 season. With a team made up of players like Steve Witzski, Corey Laster, Mark Hull, Clark Woods, Bobby Mann, Fred Witmer, and Scott Haddix, the Falcons stunned the District by capturing the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) Regional title over defending National Champions Kentucky Christian, propelling the SCC Falcons into the 1992 NCCAA Nationals. That began a coaching career on the Fort Wayne campus that would continue until the Taylor University Fort Wayne Campus discontinued its traditional undergraduate programs in May 2009.

Hamilton began his athletic career playing basketball, football, and track at Jonesboro High School in Jonesboro, Arkansas. He continued his track career competing at Taylor University, in Upland, Indiana, under the guidance of the coach who led him to the Lord and influenced his entire coaching philosophy for years to come, Coach George Glass.

Upon graduating from college, Bud felt the call to prepare for ministry and he enrolled at Florida Bible College in Miami, Florida. It was there he saw the possibility to use athletics as a ministry to reach others with the gospel. He was instrumental in organizing the first basketball team in Florida Bible College history, a team which he played on for three years using the opportunity to share Christ with opposing teams, officials, and fans.

After graduating from Florida Bible College, with a major in Biblical Studies, he took his first job at Florida Christian High School teaching mathematics and Bible along with coaching the JV football team and basketball teams. An interesting note from the JV football team: one of his players, Mike Whittington would earn a scholarship to Notre Dame and would become the Notre Dame captain his senior year.

In 1971, Florida Bible College invited Hamilton to return to coach its basketball team and develop an athletic program. For the next eight years, Hamilton led the Florida Bible College Saints to eight consecutive winning seasons, playing against higher levels of competition. One of the highlights of Hamilton's athletic program at Florida Bible College was the development of a baseball program which sponsored an annual spring tournament drawing to south Florida teams such as Ohio State University and Princeton University.

In 1981, the Lord led the Hamilton family to Pompton Plains, New Jersey, where Bud became the Youth Pastor at Jacksonville Chapel in Lincoln Park, New Jersey. For the next nine years, he had the privilege of ministering with hundreds of wonderful young people, many who still stay in touch. It was at this time Bud continued his education earning his master's degree from Liberty University in Biblical Theology. Coaching, though, was still in his blood as he had the opportunity to assist in summer basketball leagues and summer basketball camps along with coaching Little League baseball where his son Bob played. Four out of the five years their teams were city champions which gave Coach Hamilton an opportunity to lead four All Star teams towards the Little League Regional competitions.

That brings us to the SCC and Taylor University Fort Wayne years. The span of his coaching career includes some of the following highlights: 

  • In 1992, NCCAA Regional Champions and a 7th Place finish in the Nationals 
  • NCCAA and United States Corporate Athletic Association (USCAA) All Americans
    • Jason Berkhalter
    • Isaac Freeman
    • Trel Hogue
    • AJ Gooden
    • Patrick Jessup
    • Virgil Akers
    • Kevin Woods
    • Richard Thomas 
  • 1991 - 1992   NCCAA Regional Coach of the Year
  • 1998 - 2000 - NCCAA Regional Basketball Chairman
  • 1999 - 2000 NCCAA Regional Coach of the Year
  • 2000 entrance into the USCAA
  • 2005 - 2006  With an outstanding team made up of  Isaac McClung, Kevin Woods, Rich Thomas, Seneca Bratton, Virgil Akers, John Yoder, Adam Zimmerman, Jesse Boldt and Andrew Johnson - the Falcons went 30 -3 (the most wins in Falcon history) and won the USCAA National Championship in Manchester, New Hampshire.
  • 2005 - 2006  USCAA National Coach of the Year
  • 2006 - 2007 5th Place in the USCAA Nationals
  • 2006 - 2009 USCAA National Association Board member
  • 2007 - 2008 after setting a school record of 17 consecutive wins, the Falcons fell one game short of another National Championship finishing runners-up in the 2007 - 2008 National Championship game.
  • 282 career victories while at Fort Wayne
  • 8 victories while at Nationals
  • The wonderful opportunity to perform marriage ceremonies and baby dedications of some of his players and their children

Other awards :

Hamilton has served on the Board of ‘Jesus in Haiti Ministries' and is currently involved on Brookside Church's Leadership Committee. In March of 2009, the Down Syndrome Association of Northeast Indiana recognized Bud's contribution to the life of Carl Nuffer by awarding him a DSANI Award.

Despite years of ministry and basketball trips, Bud and Pam's marriage has survived for 37 years! Their adult children Bob, Jamie, Todd, and Kim continue to bring him great joy.