Creating a culture of winning

Huskies men’s basketball coach believes in excellence on and off the court

Head Coach Peter Sambu has not wasted any time in adding his own touch to the George Brown College (GBC) men’s basketball team.

Sambu who was fresh to the team this season has made it a priority to ensure that the players are winners both on and off the court.

It is clear from Sambu’s priorities that he has a strong background in education.

Focusing on what Sambu refers to as the three pillars, he expects excellence in academics, community, and athletics from his team.

When looking for members, Sambu seeks athletes who are students first and athletes second.

“I told them that we need to build a culture. A culture of winning, a culture of excellence on and off the floor, and community excellence,” said Sambu.

What attracted Sambu to GBC was the competitive nature of the league, as well as his own personal feelings of the college.

A native to Toronto, Sambu had close ties to the Huskies basketball team growing up.

“I learned the fundamentals of the game from the age of 15 to 18 in this gym, so I had the opportunity to come home,” Sambu commented.

This is Sambu’s debut season in the OCAA as well at GBC, but he is not new to coaching.

With 22 years of experience under his belt, some of the teams he has coached include Nipissing University and Lakeland College.

Under his leadership at Lakeland, the team made it to nationals one year, and had an undefeated season in another.

This success and wealth of experience has not gone unnoticed.

“He’s had a couple of very successful teams over those years, which I think have helped contribute to the success he’s had so far this season here,” says Melanie Gerin-Lajoie, manager of athletics and recreation at GBC.

The team has taken quickly to the culture and identity that Sambu has brought with him.

“The new coach, Peter Sambu definitely came and brought his own flair, his own style and touch,” says forward player Adam Costanzo, who is playing his second year for GBC.

“We’re not going to come in and try to play to another team, play down, play up we’re just going to play Husky basketball,” Costanzo added.

The team started off this season with a six-game winning streak.

Their first loss came after playing Seneca College.

In a close game, the Husky’s winning streak was broken by a three-point lead.

Sambu is pleased with the progress that the team has made so far this season.

“Process before product, as long as we’re better tomorrow than we were today, then I’m happy,” he said.

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Creating a culture of winning