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Tom Wells

Tom Wells will take over as Michigan City's new boys basketball coach. Wells coached LaPorte from 2002 to 2017.

New Michigan City boys basketball coach Tom Wells has a long offseason ahead of him as he implements his philosophy.

One of the first items on his to-do list? Buy some new dress shirts.

After two seasons of semi-retirement, Wells is back in the Duneland Athletic Conference. Michigan City's school board approved the Wolves' hiring of the former LaPorte, Portage and Griffith head coach at a Tuesday meeting. Wells replaces John Boyd, who posted an 123-110 record in 10 years as head coach.

Wells said Michigan City and South Bend Riley have been on his coaching bucket list for years and that he's intrigued by the athleticism on the Wolves' current roster.

“The thought of coaching those athletes is certainly intriguing,” Wells said. “I'm ready to get back to work.”

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Over 15 seasons at LaPorte, Wells led the Slicers to a 184-168 record and three sectional titles. He now moves across LaPorte County to coach a rival school that hasn't won a sectional since Michigan City Elston and Rogers High Schools merged in 1995.

Wolves athletic director Craig Shaman said Wells' experience was one of the top reasons Michigan City hired him – Wells has coached 24 seasons with a career 284-262 record. Shaman said Wells knows how to run a program and that it became clear in the interview process that Wells was “still hungry.”

While success for Michigan City and LaPorte may be the biggest variable that can stoke the LaPorte County rivalry, Shaman said Wells' hiring adds a new dimension.

“Of course there's an irony there,” Shaman said. “It's already something we joke about.”

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Porter County Sports Reporter

Robbie Weinstein covers Porter County prep sports and Valparaiso University athletics for The Times. You can find the Vanderbilt University and Northwestern University grad posted up on the nearest field of play or in front of the TV.