By Amelia Mack
Bobby Hain, former Youngstown State University forward and center, was recently signed to play professionally overseas with a team in Switzerland. Hain graduated last spring after playing basketball at YSU for four years.
Hain had several overseas teams that were interested in signing with him, but in August he decided to sign with Villars Basket in Switzerland.
“Switzerland was just the best fit for me,” he said.
Hain played in 110 games for the Penguins, including 80 starts. During his time at YSU, Hain averaged 10.8 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game. Hain became the 36th player in YSU history to score 1,000 points. His 679 career rebounds rank fourth on YSU all-time list, and his 1,187 career points rank eighth in YSU’s record book.
He said YSU and the experience he gained playing here were major contributors to his success.
“I played my four years at Youngstown State,” Hain said. “With the coaching staff and my career at Youngstown State I got the ability, and I’m blessed I get to keep playing the game I love professionally.”
In December, Hain went down with a foot injury and only played in 13 games his senior season. Hain said he appreciated the coaches throughout his career at YSU and especially in his tough senior year.
“They did everything right. The coaching staff has helped me tremendously,” Hain said. “I know I went down with a foot injury my senior year, but with that, they kept me positive. They are the main reason I am playing professional ball.”
Jerry Slocum, head coach of YSU men’s basketball team, said he couldn’t be happier for Hain.
“I’m very proud of Bobby. He went through so much as a senior with his injury, and the fact that he is having the opportunity to play professionally overseas … I couldn’t be happier,” Slocum said. “He is one of my all-time favorite good people and a guy with great work habits. I am very proud and happy for him that he got this opportunity.”
YSU forward, Matt Donlan, said he is proud of his former teammate.
“Being Bobby’s teammate was a privilege. He’s such a great guy and getting to learn from such a talented guy, who was so successful during his time in the horizon league, was invaluable for me,” Donlan said. “I’m really proud to see Bob playing overseas. I know how much work he has put in to get to this point in his career, so it’s nice to see that hard work pay off for him.”
YSU point guard Francisco Santiago said Hain was one of the best teammates he has ever had. When Hain was injured, Santiago said that he proved what a great leader and example he was for the rest of the team.
“He always showed up to practice. Always helped the best way that he could. Always cheered us on. Every time there was a big play, Bob was the first one to get out of his seat and cheer,” Santiago said. “He really exemplified the word teammate.”
Hain said he is thankful to the YSU community for all of the support over the last four years.
“I’m happy where it got me … playing at the next level and continuing the game I love,” he said.
Hain left for Switzerland on Sept. 14.