Coach Luke is going into his 8th year of coaching High School Basketball. He is graduate from Mission Viejo High School where he coached for 2 years. This will be his 2nd season as a Varsity Assistant at Trabuco Hills High School. His goal as a coach is to develop players skills and help individuals work together as a team. Luke is a recent graduate of Cal State University Fullerton where he received a Bachelor’s in Business Administration. He would like to thank his family, friends, and fiancé, Colleen, for their continued support.
Coach Erik started playing basketball around the age of 11 after originally playing baseball. After, he continued to play other sports including volleyball and track & field, but he always went back to playing basketball. He was a long and triple jumper on the varsity track team at Trabuco Hills High School. He continued his education at Cal State Fullerton receiving a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Kinesiology with the focus on injuries. Now he likes to coach and train kids after his hospital job to keep his love of the game a part of him while also showing kids how great the game of basketball can be. Coach Erik tries to keep a focus of fitness and conditioning with the kids as it is very important within the game of basketball.
Omar Caesar is a Personal Trainer/Basketball Coach/Special needs Coach. Coach Omar was born in Brooklyn, NY before moving to Long Island. Spent much of his childhood between both places. Started playing basketball at the age of 8. Played with the Blue Thunder in the C.Y.O league and contributed to 2nd place overall in Long Island. From Junior High going into High school received training from Jerry Powell, very well known amongst NBA circles. Was a three sport athlete at St. John the Baptist High school which included Basketball, Football, and track. Received attention from Alabama State, Syracuse, Monmouth University, and University of North Carolina for football. Attended Wesley College and finished the year number 1 in the country for division III. Left following his freshman year to attend Long Island University. It was during this year he decided to go for a coaching route and personal trainer. Graduated with a B.A in political science and became a certified trainer. Trained elementary, high school, college, and professional athletes at Athletic and fitness trainers of Long Island for 5 years. Also coached with the dream league organization for children of the spectrum for 5 years. Loves to see young athletes aspire for greatness and achieve their goals. Has always had a passion for basketball and looks forward to being a college head coach in the future.
Assistant Coach Romel started from humble beginnings. He start to love the game of basketball since he was little when his dad assembled a basketball hoop for him at the back of their front door. Coach Romel grew up in the Philippines, where his dad, brother and uncle developed him into a knowledgeable player. He studied at St. John Bosco Technical College and graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Mechanical Engineering where he also played and became the 2 X MVP. Afterwards, he played multiple commercial and interstate leagues. Coach Romel’s goal is for the kids to LOVE and ENJOY the game of BASKETBALL.
Coach Josh played high school basketball at Saddleback Valley Christian. He graduated with a total of 16 school records. He played college at Trinity International University in Chicago. Coach Josh is the Head Coach for Saddleback Valley Christian. This is his 3rd season coaching AAU under Rich Prospero. Coach Josh lives in Mission Viejo with his wife Dania.
After attending Trabuco Hills High Coach Kevin continued playing basketball in competitive men’s leagues. His pursue to be a better basketball player and Coach lead him to JW Basketball where he trained and coached for the last 5 years. He worked with kids from 3 years old – High School, kids with special needs, and international club teams.
Coach Chris comes to Nikos with an extensive knowledge of the game and has spent many years coaching local High Schools. Along with coaching here at Nikos, Coach Chris is an Assistant Coach at Saddleback College in Mission Viejo. He spent 2015-2018 as Varsity Head Coach for Mission Viejo High School. Prior to this Coach Chris also was an Assistant Varsity Coach for Trabuco Highs High School between 2011-2014.
Tara Cutler comes to Team Nikos with a background in Finance and Operations with a degree in Accounting and Business Management. She previously worked for Attorneys and Financial Banking Institutions for well over 20 years. Over the last few years she has worked for several non-profit organizations, Newhart Middle School and Girls Scouts of Orange County to name a few. Tara has an extensive background in competitive Cheer and Dance from Middle School through College, and coached for many years. Her 15 year old daughter Caroline was on the Dance Worlds Team for 2018, and is currently a member of the Song Team at Tesoro High School. Tara’s son, Chase graduated High School at 17 with a dual enrollment program which gave him an Associates Degree from Saddleback Community College. Her husband Jeff, and their family are originally from Georgia, although they have been happy to call Mission Viejo home for the past 7 years. Joining the Team Nikos family has been a fun and rewarding experience for her, as she has always enjoyed working with the kids, parents, staff and other coaches. As a former coach herself she understands hard work, dedication, leading by example, and respect for “Team”. Tara hopes to bring a unique perspective to our basketball family as we all work towards the growth and success of program. As mentors for our young athletes we must strive to impact their development as teammates so they succeed in all aspects of life.
High School Director Rich Prospero is a former Head College Coach (Chapman College – 1988) and High School Coach (Santa Ana Valley – 1992-94). Coach Rich was name Orange County’s High School Coach of the Year in 1992. In the past 20 years he has coached, trained and mentored many of the elite players here in Orange County and has developed close relationships with the basketball coaching fraternity at both the high school and college level.
Played high school at SVC. Graduated with 16 school records. Played college at Trinity International University in Chicago. 2nd season as assistant coach at SVC. 2nd season coaching AAU under Rich Prospero. Lives in Mission Viejo with his wife Dania.
Played 2 years of varsity at Millikan high school. All league senior year and cif finalist junior year. Was a red shirt at Xavier my freshman year. Transferred to Prairie View, then Cal State Dominguez Hills. I graduated with BA in Sociology and play 3 years for csudh. Started coaching as a varsity assistant and lower level coach at Long Beach Wilson. Over the last twenty year I’ve been a head varsity coach at several high schools in Los Angeles and Long Beach. Won league titles and helped numerous players earn scholarships to 4 year colleges/universities. I also started Spring and Fall leagues for high school programs in LA. I’m currently in my 2nd season as Lead Assistant for the men’s basketball program at LA Harbor College.
Lewis Nelson was born and raised in Seattle, Washington and spent summers growing up visiting family in Southern California since his parents are both from the Los Angeles area. The son of a former NBA basketball player and a teacher, growing up, Lewis excelled in the classroom and on the court. He earned All-Metro 1st team honors his junior and senior seasons at Cleveland High School in Seattle. Lewis spent one year at LA Harbor College, where he played and started on the basketball team. He then transferred to Cal State Dominguez Hills University where he played and started three years of basketball, senior season as a captain, and earned his Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology with a teaching option.
Mr. Nelson has been coaching at high schools in South LA for the last 15 years. He won a LA City CIF Div. 4 Championship as head coach at Animo South LA high for boys’ basketball in 2012. He also won a LA City CIF Div. 5 Championship at Middle College High in 2015 in boys’ basketball and was named LA City CIF Coach of the Year as well. Lewis currently is an assistant coach at LA Harbor College and head of recruiting.