Change Coming: QU's Bell passes torch to Hellenthal - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Change Coming: QU's Bell passes torch to Hellenthal

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QUINCY, IL. (WGEM) -- One chapter closed and another opened Friday inside the Quincy University Hall of Fame Room.

Marty Bell's 14-year run as QU men's basketball coach came to an end and Ryan Hellenthal's first season began.

The university held a press conference to address the significant switch at the top, which allows Bell to focus solely on his athletic director position.

Bell admits he felt the end of his coaching career was near in the final minutes of last season's NCAA Tournament loss at Bellarmine and says it's time to pass the torch to someone he trusts.

"The basketball program deserves full devotion and attention from a leader. I'm not sure I can give that anymore based on where we're headed," Bell said during an emotional speech. 

"I tried to do the right thing for all parties concerned. It's time to move on. It's time to look at the future and give this program a chance to go even higher, and achieve even greater success."

Bell turns the reigns over to his top assistant Hellenthal whose only been a part of the QU program for one season.

But he grew up in Quincy and hopes to continue the long standing tradition of the program.

"Our goal is for the QU basketball program to be talked about in the same conversations as the best team in the country year-in and year-out," Hellenthal said.

"I can promise you this: we will play with energy, effort, and enthusiasm. Tenacity and toughness will be one of the key staples our coaching staff will instill in our players daily. I'm proud to be from Quincy and I'm proud to be your coach."

Hellenthal is the son of Quincy High School Hall of Fame coach Mike Hellenthal and inherits a team that graduated all five starters, and will have six new players this season.

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