PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Following a historically successful season, Providence College men’s basketball coach Ed Cooley was given a key to the capital city.

Cooley, a Providence native, led the Friars to the 2022 NCAA Tournament’s Sweet Sixteen for the first time in 25 years as the No. 4 seed, which is the highest ranking in the program’s history.

Under Cooley’s leadership, the Friars posted a 27-6 record and won the team’s first regular-season title.

“Ed Cooley is a great example of what leadership, hard work and dedication looks like,” Mayor Jorge Elorza said. “In addition to being one of the most respected NCAA coaches in the nation, Cooley has been a great influence, leader and friend to our community.”

Cooley was named the Werner Ladder Naismith Coach of the Year and the Big East Coach of the Year. He is the first Friars coach to win either award.

“I have so much passion and love for this city,” Cooley said. “It was a special season and I am thankful for how the city and the state supported the Friars. That is what makes the Dunk such a special home court for us.”

Watch: Coach Ed Cooley reacts to receiving Key to the City

With a 221-141 overall record in his 11 years coaching the Friars, Cooley ranks second for most wins in the team’s history.

Cooley grew up in Providence and graduated from Central High School.

“Coach Cooley likes to say he’s just a guy from South Providence, but for our students he is so much more,” Providence Superintendent Dr. Javier Montañez said. “He is a powerful reminder to our kids that they can succeed by working hard, being prepared, never giving up, and showing gratitude.”