223 Intercollegiate Athletics Building l rdturner@uci.edu  

Head Coach Russell Turner

Russell Turner, who recently completed his seventh season as head coach at UC Irvine, has guided the Anteaters to 114 wins over the past five seasons and postseason appearances each of those years (2013 CIT, 2014 NIT, 2015 NCAA and 2016 CIT and 2017 NIT). 

He was named Big West Conference Coach of the Year this past season after leading the Anteaters to their third regular-season league title in the last four years and he was a finalist for the 2017 Skip Prosser Man of the Year national award.

His Anteater teams are just one of 22 NCAA Division I programs to win at least 21 games each of the last five seasons.

In 2016, Turner led UCI to a 28-10 record, setting school records for overall victories, non-conference wins (15), and road victories (13).

In 2015, he led UCI to the program’s first NCAA Division I Tournament berth as the Anteaters won the Big West Conference Tournament for the first time in school history.  UCI took three-time national champion Louisville to the wire in the NCAA Second round, falling 57-55.

Turner was named 2014 Big West Conference Coach of the Year and NABC District 9 Coach of the Year after leading the Anteaters to their first league regular-season title in 12 years and a second consecutive 20-win season.

He guided the ‘Eaters to a 23-12 overall record in 2013-14 and a 13-3 mark in Big West play.  The 23 wins tied for the second-highest mark in UCI history.  Five of his players received Big West postseason recognition.    

Turner was named 2014 Big West Conference Coach of the Year and NABC District 9 Coach of the Year after leading the Anteaters to their first league regular-season title in 12 years and a second consecutive 20-win season.

Turner was named UC Irvine's head coach April 9, 2010, after serving the previous six seasons as an assistant coach for the Golden State Warriors of the National Basketball Association following positions at Stanford University and Wake Forest University.

Turner also served as a coach for the Warriors' summer-league entry in Las Vegas for five seasons. He has been an active participant in the NBA's international outreach camps, including Basketball without Borders, representing the league in Turkey, China and Lithuania. BWB is a program that uses basketball to create positive social change in education, health and wellness.

Turner was a member of Mike Montgomery's Stanford University staff from 2000-04 when the Cardinal had a combined overall record of 105-24 (.814), including 59-13 (.819) in Pac-10 play. Stanford won Pac-10 regular-season titles in 2001 and 2004, was ranked No. 1 in the polls both seasons, and advanced to the NCAA tournament each of Turner's four years, including the West Regional final in 2001.

The list of players he worked with at Stanford includes All-Americans Josh Childress, Casey Jacobsen, Jarron Collins and Jason Collins.

Prior to Stanford, Turned worked under Dave Odom as an assistant at Wake Forest University from 1994-2000.

The Demon Deacons won 161 games in those six seasons, advancing to the NCAA tournament three times, including the Midwest Regional final in 1996. Tim Duncan was a three-time All-American during Turner's tenure at Wake Forest.

Turner's first coaching position was as an assistant at his alma mater, Hampden-Sydney (Va.) College in 1993-94.

As a player at Hampden-Sydney, Turner was a two-time All-American (1991 & 1992) and set the school's career scoring record of 2,272 points. He was a member of Hampden-Sydney's first two NCAA tournament teams and was inducted into Hampden-Sydney's Athletic Hall of Fame in 2002.

He graduated magna cum laude in 1992 with a B.A. in English and economics, and earned numerous academic honors including election into Phi Beta Kappa.

Turner is a native of Roanoke, Va.  He and his wife, Elizabeth, a physician, have two children, Devlin and Darius.



The Turner File

  • 2017 Big West Coach of the Year
  • 2017 Finalist, Skip Prosser Man of the Year Award
  • 2014 Big West and NABC District 9 Coach of the Year
  • Assistant Coach, Golden State Warriors
  • Assistant Coach, Stanford
  • Assistant Coach, Wake Forest
  • All-American, Hampden-Sydney (1991, 1992)
Turner Coaching Record
Year School Record Conf./ Finish  
2017 UC Irvine 21-15 (.583) 12-4/1st  
2016 UC Irvine 28-10 (.737) 13-3/T1st  
2015 UC Irvine 21-13 (.618) 11-5/T2nd  
2014 UC Irvine 23-12 (.657) 13-3/1st  
2013 UC Irvine 21-16 (.568) 11-7/4th  
2012 UC Irvine 12-20 (.375) 6-10/T6th  
2011 UC Irvine 13-19 (.406) 6-10/T7th   



Contact Coach Turner

Email: UCIMBB@uci.edu

Office: IAB 223


Assistant Coach Blaine Taylor


Blaine Taylor, who has 20-plus years of NCAA Division I coaching experience, joined the UC Irvine staff as assistant coach in the summer of 2016.

He has previously been a highly-successful head coach at Montana and Old Dominion, leading those programs to a combined 380 wins and 11 postseason appearances in 19 seasons. 

Taylor won 141 games in seven years at Montana from 1991-98 with four 20-win seasons, two trips to the NCAA Tournament and one NIT appearance.

He recorded 239 victories in 12 seasons with Old Dominion (2001-2013), including seven 20-win seasons and eight consecutive postseason appearances.  Taylor guided the Monarchs to four NCAA Tournaments, including a first-round win over Notre Dame in 2010.  He is the winningest coach in Old Dominion history.

A 1981 graduate of Montana, Taylor served as an assistant coach at Stanford under Mike Montgomery from 1998-2001 as the Cardinal reached the NCAA Tournament each of those three seasons.




Assistant Coach Ryan Badrtalei

Ryan Badrtalei is in his 12th year on the UC Irvine men's basketball staff and eightth as an assistant coach. He is in his seventh year as an assistant under head coach Russell Turner.

Prior to being named an assistant in 2009 by former head coach Pat Douglass, Badrtalei served as video coordinator and director of basketball operations.

With the UCI staff, Badrtalei has roles that include recruiting, player development, scouting and academic coordination. He also has had the opportunity to develop players that compete professionally in the United States and internationally.

He joined the Anteater staff in 2005 after serving the previous two seasons as a varsity assistant and junior varsity coach at Capistrano Valley High School, his alma mater, under Brian Mulligan, the son of former UCI head coach Bill Mulligan.

Badrtalei graduated from UCLA in 2003 with a degree in psychobiology and a minor in education. While at UCLA, he was involved with both the men's and women's basketball programs.   Badrtalei was an academic counselor, peer mentor and was also on the Executive Board of the UCLA Student Alumni Association.

He was involved with various non-profit organizations focused on underprivileged youths in the Los Angeles area.  As a pre-med at UCLA, Badrtalei garnered experience working with professors on various research ventures in psychology and neuroscience.

He and his wife, Drue, a Long Beach State graduate and former U.S. National Water Polo team member, reside in Irvine.  Their son, Drayke, was born in July 2012.

The Badrtalei File

  • Twelfth year on the UC Irvine men's basketball staff, seventh as an assistant coach
  • Has served as video coordinator and director of basketball operations
  • Previously worked with the men's and women's basketball programs at UCLA



Contact Coach Badrtalei

 Email: rbadrtal@uci.edu

Office: IAB 221


Assistant Coach Michael Wilder

Michael Wilder, a former UC Irvine standout, is in his first season as an assistant coach and third year overall on the men's basketball staff.

He served the previous two seasons as the program's director of administration.

Wilder, who played for the Anteaters from 2009-13, ranks No. 3 in UCI history in three-point field goals (224), 14th in rebounds (596) and assists (272), and 25th in points (1,082).  He played in 126 games during his career.

Wilder was named to the All-Big West Conference second team as a junior when he led the 'Eaters in scoring at 11.5 points per game.

As a senior, he hit a game-winning three in a victory over UC Santa Barbara and he scored a team-high 18 points (16 in the second half) in an 88-85 road win at UC Davis when UCI overcame a 19-point halftime deficit.

Wilder played professionally in Spain in 2013-14.

The Wilder File

  • Served as UCI's director of administration (2014-16)
  • Played professionally in Spain (2013-14)
  • Ranks third at UCI with 224 career threes

Contact Michael Wilder

Email: mwilder@uci.edu

Office: IAB 210


Director of Basketball Operations James Blake

James Blake is in his first year on the UC Irvine staff, joining the Anteater program as the director of basketball operations in the summer of 2016.

Blake served as head coach from 2010-15 at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia.  His team led NCAA Division II in four categories in the 2014-15 season, including scoring at 104.2 points per game.

Blake was associate head coach at Columbia College in 2009-10 after serving as an assistant coach in the Big West Conference at CSUN from 2007-09.  The Matadors won the 2008-09 Big West Conference regular-season and tournament titles to advance to the NCAA Tournament.

He was associate head coach at Cal State Stanislaus from 2005-07, an assistant at Idaho State in 2004-05 and the University of Victoria, his alma mater, from 2002- 04. 

Blake earned his master’s level in coaching from the National Coaching Institute at the University of Victoria and also his bachelor’s degree from the University of Victoria.

He and his wife, Maria, have a daughter, Lyla.


Contact James Blake

Email: blakejd@uci.edu | Phone: 949-824-3234

Office: IAB 210



Director of Basketball Administration Pat Flesher


Pat Flesher is in his first year with the UC Irvine program, serving as the director of basketball administration.

He joins the Anteaters from UNC Greensboro, where he served on the staff for three years, including the past two as the director of basketball operations.

Flesher spent his first year on the UNCG staff as a graduate assistant, assisting with player development, video, statistics and administrative tasks.

Prior to UNCG, Flesher was the head men’s basketball manager for four years at Pepperdine.  As head manager, he oversaw all other managers, coordinated equipment needs and assisted with filming and editing of practice.

Flesher earned his master’s degree from UNCG in liberal studies in 2014. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Pepperdine in 2013 in public relations with a minor in coaching.  He is married to Brooke Flesher.




Contact Pat Flesher

Email: pflesher@uci.edu | Phone: 949-824-3234

Office: IAB 210

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