Bill Ballinger is returning home.
The former head coach of the Bishop Manogue boys and girls basketball teams will again lead the Miners. Ballinger has been hired as Bishop Manogue's boys basketball coach, replacing Moe Golshani, who wasn't retained following the Miners' 2019 Northern 4A Regional championship season.
"I don't think there's anything else in my life that can make me any happier right now," Ballinger told NSN. "I'm extremely blessed and I'm fortunate and I love to coach and I love Manogue and you put all that all together and it couldn't be more special."
Ballinger was Manogue's girls varsity coach from 2005-08 and the program's boys varsity coach from 2008-12. In 2012, Ballinger led the Miners to the state championship game after an upset victory over heavily favored Bishop Gorman in the state semifinal. He resigned following that season to spend more time with his family. Ballinger traveled the country that next year but never truly left coaching as he ran the Reno Ballers AAU team.
"I've always been interesting in coming back," Ballinger said. "I've never stopped coaching since I left and the opportunity never presented itself and I stayed out of the way the best I could because my son was playing for a couple of years. I heard Moe was leaving and threw my hat in the ring and I understand I had some pretty stiff competition. There were some other really good coaches vying for the job and I was fortunate enough to get it."
Ballinger helped mentor future NBA players Luke Babbitt and Armon Johnson in the Reno Ballers program. He said he's never felt as good in his coaching career and he's looking for to another run at Manogue. The Miners lose the majority of their regional championship team, but Ballinger is plenty familiar with the roster he'll inherit, including his son, Cort, who averaged 5.1 points, 3.7 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 3.4 steals per game as a sophomore for the Miners last season.
"They graduate eight kids and seven of those were the primary players on the team," Ballinger said. "From that aspect, we're starting over but we have some great kids coming in, some juniors from last year and most of them have played for me as kids from the fourth to eighth grade. We're excited about working with them since they haven't gotten much of an opportunity to play at the high school level yet."
Manogue went 26-4 overall last season and 10-0 in league play.