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Former Hoopeston Area coach Matt Coltson named Shelbyville boys basketball head coach

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SHELBYVILLE -- Matt Colston, who most recently coached at Hoopeston Area, has been named the new Shelbyville boys' basketball coach. He replaces Bob Herdes. 

Colston will teach physical education taking over Kevin Kramer's spot. Kramer retired from coaching track and field and cross county as well as teaching after 33 years. 

"He has got a wealth of knowledge in basketball," said Shelbyville athletics director Tony Pullen. "He has had a lot of 20 win seasons and did a good job in Hoopeston. He is a basketball junkie, who loves basketball. He has a good foundation to work on. 

Herdes who was an assistant coach under Sean Taylor when the 1995-96 team went 34-1 and on won the Class A (two-class system) state title. He was also an assist through the 2000-01 season. He guided the Rams to a  60-24 record in the last three season, including back-to-back 20 plus win seasons. Herdes also coached the Rams from 1974-75 through 1983-84 going 128-133. In his 13 years, he was 188-157 (.545). 

"Bob has been around the program for a long time," said Pullen. "He got the most of what he had."

"I follow high school basketball and I saw the job was open and put my name in the ring and was fortunate enough to get it," Colston said. "I saw it as my first choice based on the kids coming back and that they have been successful. We like Shelbyville because of the quality of the schools as we have a young daughter and I want to be in a nice community for her to live and a quality school that she can grow up in. Shelbyville met all the checks and balances for us. I am fortunate and happy and lucky that they gave me the chance to come down and coach."

The last seven years Colston has been at Hoopeston Area, including the first six as the boy's basketball coach where he went 101-72 (.584), including back-to-back 20 plus win seasons in 2017 (23-5) and 2018 (22-9). He was the athletics director last year at the school of 365. From 2008-09 through 2011-12 he was the head coach at Bushnell-Prairie City/Avon, which included a 19-9 season in 2010-11.  From 2005-06 through 20007-08 he as an assistant under Erik Buerkett The 2007-08 Bullets went 23-7. 

Colston is a 1996 graduate of Illini Bluffs in Glasford where he played under his father, Mike Colston, who finished a 30-year career at the school with 462 victories, which ties him for 133rd place all-time in Illinois High School Association history. Colston went on to play and at Dubuque University, a Division III school. He was an assistant at Dubuque as well. 

"My dad influenced me and I have learned things from Tom Wierzba (Illinois Coaches Association Hall of Fame coach at Farmington) and Dave Mott (former Pekin coach). They have all been influences on my coaching. I have been fortunate enough to be around good coaches. Marty McDermott at Dubuque (now athletics director at Muskegon Community College in Michigan) taught me a lot also."

Colston said of defense, "We will play 95 percent man-to-man and want to get after you. Offensively, we probably will be 95 percent motion offense."

Colston has met the team and they have had several open gyms. 

"It is a culture change and shock to have a new coach as I have been through it," said Colston. "The kids have been very friendly and respectful. It will take some time to understand new things. The big emphasis during the summer is to do things on your own. During the summer is when you make yourself a better player. I know the kids are being pulled to each sport and we are trying to get a piece of their time."

The Rams lose two-time JG-TC Player of the Year Malcolm Miller, but everyone else could be back. 

The assistant coaches are the same as the last several years with Paul Conlon the junior varsity coach and Colby Rothrock the freshmen/sophomore coach. 

Contact Mike Monahan at (217) 238-6854. Follow him on Twitter: @monahanmikejgtc

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Related to this story

With last year' s JG-TC Player of the Year, Malcolm Miller, now at Illinois State, the Shelbyville Rams boys' basketball team looks to be a more balanced scoring team. "One player can't make up almost 30 points (27.4)," said first-year Shelbyville coach Matt Colston. 

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