McKillop makes exit after one season as West Ranch boys hoops head coach


After just one season as head coach of the Wildcats, West Ranch boys basketball coach Sean McKillop resigned on Wednesday morning.

McKillop said that he felt he had to leave the program shortly after the Cats’ loss to San Marcos in the first round of the CIF-Southern Section Division 2A game.

“I just needed a little bit of down time to just confirm that it was not just an emotional decision and I had to just weigh a lot of options and kind of where the state of the program was at the time,” the coach said.

“I think it’s best getting a fresh face, a new voice to kind of give the program just a fresh start. “

McKillop was thrust into the head coach position after previous coach Shant Bicakci’s sudden departure in December. Bicakci cited personal reasons for his resignation.

The Wildcats ended this season with a 16-11 overall record and a 5-6 mark in Foothill League play.

Senior Austin Galuppo surpassed 2,000 career points during McKillop’s tenure and the Cats saw impressive performances from a plethora of other players as well.

McKillop, however, still felt that his program had underachieved.

“It really was a difficult year just with everything that happened,” he said. “You can’t make excuses even if it was tough or difficult or you had adversity. At the end of the day, you’ve still got to move forward.”

The coach spent nine years total with the program. He took last season off, but was lured back into a coaching position after Bicakci left.

He’s seen the changes that prep basketball has undergone over the last decade, and is unsure of what to make of the current climate.

“…At a public school, you want to be competitive, you’ve just got to be willing to deal,” said McKillop. “You and your school, admin and everybody included really have to be prepared to deal with just a lot of headaches.

“…There’s a constant battle and if it’s not all hands on deck … it just makes for a real uphill battle daily.”

As for his next move, McKillop plans to stay involved on basketball and said that several schools had reached out to him, but did not disclose further details.

“I feel like the next move I made will have to be the right fit,” he said. “Not jump into something just to be back involved.”

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