Brion (pronounced Bree-on) Dunlap was announced as Claflin University’s new head coach for men's basketball on Thursday, May 19, during a press conference at the Jonas T. Kennedy Health and Wellness Complex. Dunlap was chosen to lead the program following a national search.
"This is a great opportunity," said Dunlap. "I look forward to working with two outstanding leaders – Claflin President Dr. Dwaun Warmack and Athletic Director Tony O'Neal – that want to win. They've been winners all their lives, and I'm trying to be a part of a winning program. Winners create winners, and that's my goal. To produce championships, raise banners, and most importantly, see every student-athlete who comes to our program walk across the stage to get their degree and raise banners that will last forever."
Dunlap comes to Claflin after a successful stint at Harris-Stowe State University, where he spent five successful seasons with the Hornets. He compiled an 81-56 overall record and won three American Midwest Conference (AMC) Tournament Championships (2017, 2018, and 2020). His tenure produced several players who earned All NAIA and All-AMC honors.
"This young man took over a program [Harris-Stowe] a few years back … and he built a successful program," said Claflin University Director of Athletics Tony O'Neal. "Everybody talks about building a great team. Legacies are built on great programs."
Before Harris-Stowe, Dunlap spent a season as an assistant coach at Winston-Salem State University, also a member of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA).
He also spent five seasons as an assistant coach at the College of the Holy Cross, where he helped the Crusaders compile a 34-30 overall record in two seasons. Holy Cross was 20-14 in the 2013-14 season - the team's first 20-win season since 2006-07. The Crusaders notched three finishes in the top half of the Patriot League standings during Dunlap's tenure.
Claflin finished 7-20 overall last year. Included was an opening round defeat in the 2022 CIAA Men's Basketball Tournament.
Dunlap is a 1998 graduate of Old Dominion University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in human services counseling. He was a four-year starter with the Monarchs and led the team to two NCAA Tournament appearances and two Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) championships. Dunlap was named to the CAA All-Rookie team in 1995 and the CAA All-Tournament team in 1997. He earned Chevrolet Player of the Game honors following Old Dominion's 59-55 loss to New Mexico in the first round of the 1997 NCAA Tournament. He still ranks among the CAA's all-time leaders in career assists.