After playing for the Fashion Institute of Technology’s basketball team, he transferred to the College of Saint Rose in Albany, where he helped the Golden Knights to their first appearance in the Division II N.C.A.A. men’s tournament, in 1992.
A 6-foot-7 forward, he was known for his exuberance, his embrace of opponents after a game and his fierce rebounding.
After Mr. Filien’s graduation, he embarked on a series of coaching jobs around the country that included stints at the University of Vermont, from 2001 to 2005, and the State University of New York at Albany, from 2005 to 2011. His teams won five consecutive conference titles, three of them while he was at Vermont and two more at Albany.
“That’s what he talked about most,” his brother Robert said by phone.
In addition to his brothers, Mr. Filien is survived by his wife, Tiffani (Adams) Filien; his parents; his daughter, Lauren, who plays high school basketball in East Greenbush; his son, Marcus, a forward on the Cornell University basketball team; and his sister, Marie Hamilton.
After moving around so much in his coaching career, Mr. Filien was glad for landing at Bryant & Stratton, which allowed him finally to settle down, in Albany. And he had ambitions to move his school up in the ranks.
“He loved it,” Robert Filien said of his brother’s job. “He was hoping to make a name for Bryant & Stratton and make it a Division III school.”