“Coach Craig always encouraged me to push my limits and strive for greatness.” — Emma Cherwinski, PGC Grad
Craig Nickel comes to PGC with a vast array of coaching experiences. Craig has been an assistant coach at Wilfrid Laurier University and the University of Waterloo and has coached both boys and girls at the high school level.
Craig’s teams have won numerous league and regional championships, including three medals at the AAAA OFSAA Provincial Championships. In addition, Craig’s varsity girls teams at Waterloo Collegiate Institute qualified for 14 straight provincial championships (2001-2015). He has also had great success coaching club basketball, where he led OBA teams to gold, silver and bronze medals.
Craig has also served as the head coach of the Tri-County Thunder team in the Junior Elite League (JUEL)–Canada’s top league for high school aged girls–for the past three years. With Craig at the helm, the Thunder recorded a JUEL runner up finish in 2013-14 before winning the league title in 2014-15. There he was selected as the JUEL “Coach of the Year” for each of the last two seasons.
In the off-season, Craig has worked with Basketball Ontario’s Elite Development Program and Basketball Canada’s Centre for Performance, as well as being a presenter at the Nike All-Canada Camp.
Craig has an extensive education, including his Bachelor of Business Administration (Wilfrid Laurier University ’88), Masters of Business Administration (McMaster University ’89), and Bachelor of Education (University of Western Ontario ’90). Craig has been a Vice-Principal at Waterloo Collegiate and presently serves as a Guidance Counselor and Leadership teacher.
Craig has sent many players to PGC courses over the years and has also attended PGC courses as a coach.
What They’re Saying About Craig
“Craig is a great leader and very wise. He is a very great coach.”
— Aspen Michelin, PGC Grad
“PGC has impacted my life so much. My parents will be wowed at how how I’ve changed. This overall experience was fantastic and changed my life for the better.”
— Jack Crull, PGC Grad
“This was by far the best week of my life because I got to do the thing I loved with such amazing coaches and players. I have never wanted to get out on the court so badly. I’m forever grateful to Coach Craig for giving me my confidence back.”
— Ellie Klein, PGC Grad
“My experience at PGC was a life-changing experience. Last year, when I came here, I knew I wanted to come back and this year was even better because I learned even more stuff thanks to the amazing staff.”
— Austin Jackson, PGC Grad
“PGC did a great job pushing and stretching me to be someone I really wanted to be. It is by far the best camp I’ve ever attended.”
— Olivia Allen, PGC Grad
“When I got here, I was nervous coming here alone. PGC brings you in and treats you like family. My experience here was one I will never forget. I have changed so much in 5 days. What I love about PGC is that they will not let you fail. PGC strives to make you better. Coach Craig always encouraged me to push my limits and strive for greatness. I would like to personally thank him.”
— Emma Cherwinski, PGC Grad
“Raising all of the money to come was so worth it. Words cannot explain what this camp has done on so many levels to impact my life. Thank you PGC for all of the things you have taught me about basketball and being a better person.”
— Anna Malmquist, PGC Grad
“I just finished the PGC Prep School in Ontario, Canada as an observing coach along with my 12-year old son. OMG! It was one of the most amazing experiences of both our lives. And that is saying something, as I am almost 50. We didn’t know what to expect, but the experience proved transformational. Such a positive (but demanding) environment. We got a year’s worth of basketball knowledge in one week—not just lessons in basketball, but lessons in life. This was more than worth the investment of time and money. We will definitely pursue other PGC courses—I can’t say enough about it. The bonding among the athletes is something my son will never forget and will carry with him always. The Ultimate Basketball Challenge on the final night was almost a spiritual experience. Thank you Craig from the bottom of our hearts.”
— Jeremy Brown, Parent of a PGC Grad