Bradburn embraces Mt. Vernon coaching opportunity


Joe Bradburn is quite familiar with Mt. Vernon High School.

“I’ve been associated with it in some way living in the area,” Bradburn said. “My daughter went to Mt. Vernon. I know a lot about Fortville and Mt. Vernon Community Schools. I love how it’s a family atmosphere and the community still has a hometown feeling. Obviously, they have good talent right now. The community is what I enjoy as much as anything.”

Joe Bradburn

Bradburn was recently named as the Mt. Vernon boys basketball coach. Bradburn, who has a 301-234 record in 24 years as a head coach, coached Greenwood the past six seasons. He replaces Ben Rhoades, who resigned following an arrest for operating a vehicle while intoxicated Feb. 20 in Shelbyville. Rhoades was on paid leave following the arrest. Assistant coach Nate Bingham served as interim head coach for the final four games.

“I was in that conference (Hoosier Heritage) when I coached Yorktown, and Mt. Vernon has just always had gritty, tough players,” Bradburn said. “The success of the athletic programs throughout history speaks for itself. It’s exciting and fun to be part of it.”

Bradburn, who previously lived in Fortville, lives in Fishers.

“They’re growing and neighborhoods are getting bigger,” he said. “It’s a good time to be part of that type of excitement.”

The Marauders were 22-3 in 2021-22 and 17-7 in 2020-21, winning sectional titles each year. The team finished 16-9, losing in the sectional final last season. Freshmen guards Julien Smith (13.1 points per game) and Luke Ertel (13.0 ppg) were the two top scorers.

“They started three freshmen and a sophomore in the sectional and had pretty good success,” Bradburn said. “They have the bulk of the scoring coming back. We’ll work on defense and getting the concept of defense down. The skill level is guard. They have good guard play, which is a great foundation to work from.”

Bradburn said he wasn’t looking to leave Greenwood.

“I had a great opportunity with my job and the people I worked with,” Bradburn said. “It’s been great, but this is better for me and better for my family.”

Bradburn is going to be director of the work-based learning co-op program.

His first head coaching job was at Cowan in 1994 for one season. He spent the next 10 seasons at Yorktown, reaching the semistate in 1998. From there, he spent four seasons at DeKalb and three seasons at Huntington North. He took a break from teaching and coaching for a few years, helping a friend with a business. He returned to coaching in 2018 at Greenwood. His 2020 team finished 19-6 and won a sectional title. The Woodmen were 18-6 last season.