Scott Thom begins his second full season as the head strength and conditioning coach for the California men's basketball program. Under Thom's tutelage, the Golden Bears have experienced noticeable gains in the weight room that have translated to on-court success.
Thom, who has worked as a strength and conditioning coach as well as a basketball mentor for more than a decade, joined the Cal staff in 2009. He began his tenure with the Bears as an assistant strength and conditioning coach with the men's basketball program, before being elevated to the head strength and condition coach in the middle of the 2010-11 season. Thom recently completed his second off-season training program where he continues to develop a positive, and learning conducive training atmosphere with a "get after it" mentality.
"I take pride in making sure my student-athletes understand the `why'; why they are doing a certain exercise, and why it will make them a better basketball player," Thom explained.
A National Strength & Conditioning Association Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and USA Weightlifting certified coach, Thom brings a balance of strength training, injury prevention, and basketball specific exercises to help maximize a student-athlete's potential on the court. Having served as a head basketball coach himself, Thom can more easily identify an individual's on-court deficiencies and work to improve on them during their workout sessions."
A native of Napa, Calif., Thom attended West Valley College before transferring to California State University-Chico where he earned his undergraduate degree in 2002. Following a season playing semi-professionally with the Harbour Heat of the New Zealand Basketball League, Thom returned to California where he earned his teaching credential at Sonoma State University.
Thom began his coaching career as the head junior varsity basketball coach at Vintage High School in Napa, Calif., while he also served as a physical educator and weight training instructor in 2003. After earning a promotion to an assistant coach with the varsity team during his third year with the school, Thom was later named the head varsity coach in 2006. During his final season of a four-year tenure as the head varsity coach at Vintage, he guided the Crushers to their first playoff appearance in 10 years and was named the Napa Valley Coach of the Year.
Thom, who also serves as a weight training specialist at HealthQuest Fitness Center in Napa, Calif., has coached several professional athletes, including Jeremy Tyler of the NBA's Golden State Warriors, as well as Amit Tamir, Harper Kamp and Jorge Gutierrez, who are each playing internationally.
"During high school I was fortunate to play for a great coach, who had a very positive impact on my life; Russ Critchfield," Thom said. "Ever since then, I knew I wanted to be a coach and my goal has always been to make that same positive impact on my athletes, as he did with me."
Thom resides in Richmond with his fiancé Julianna Cazares.