Jones takes over Tusculum program
Mentor brings 214 career victories in 14 years as head coach
GREENEVILLE, Tenn. -- Michael Jones was named men's basketball head coach at Tusculum, director of athletics Frankie DeBusk announced.
Jones comes to Tusculum after serving the past 12 years as head coach at South Atlantic Conference member Brevard. Jones replaces former Tusculum coach Jim Boone, who resigned last week after six seasons on the sidelines to accept a similar position at West Virginia Wesleyan.
Jones led Brevard to an historic campaign in 2009-10, as the Tornados finished the season 21-10 while capturing the South Atlantic Conference tournament title and the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Division II Tournament. Jones was named the SAC Coach of the Year as the team set or tied 27 individual and team records.
A Maysville, Ky., native, Jones has amassed 214 victories in 14 years as a collegiate head coach, including 175 in 12 seasons at Brevard. Jones has led his programs to three national tournament appearances, including two with the Tornados. Jones has also seen five of his players offered professional basketball contracts, including two in the NBDL.
"I am very excited to welcome Michael Jones to Tusculum College," DeBusk said. "I am absolutely confident that he will lead our program to success, both on and off the basketball court, while positively representing our college, the South Atlantic Conference and NCAA Division II. Michael is a well-respected member of the coaching community, an accomplished recruiter and in a short time, has made a positive impact within our conference. There are exciting years ahead for Tusculum basketball."
While at Brevard, Jones' teams have accounted for 20 wins or more on four occasions. In 2001-02, his squad was ranked as high as No. 12 nationally (NAIA), while posting an impressive 22-11 record. The Tornados captured both the Appalachian Athletic Conference regular-season and tournament titles that season, led by All-American and AAC Player of the Year David Evans. The program also held a 98 percent graduation rate during Jones' tenure.
He mentored 10 all-conference performers at Brevard, including last season with Josh Roper, the 2011 SAC scoring champion. Roper, a 2011 first-team All-SAC selection and 2011 All-South Atlantic Region second-team selection, finished his senior season leading the league with 21.2 points and 2.56 steals per contest.
Also among the list of outstanding BC players coached by Jones is the program's all-time leading scorer and rebounder in All-American Jonathan Whitson (2006-10). Whitson is Brevard's career leader in points (2,028), rebounds (942) and blocked shots (122).
"I am so happy and honored to work at such a great institution as Tusculum College and to have this opportunity," Jones said. "Tusculum has a great academic and athletic history and I would like to thank (President) Dr. Nancy Moody and coach DeBusk for affording me the opportunity to lead the Pioneers. I am excited about the support for our program and the resources we have to achieve our goals at the highest levels."
Before coaching at Brevard, Jones was the head coach at Hazard Community College from 1997 to 1999. There he led HCC to a 21-9 record in his first year as head coach, while facing a Division I-laden schedule. In the 1998-99 season, the team began with a preseason No. 8 national ranking.
Before his three-year stint at Hazard, Jones was on the coaching staff at his alma mater, Eastern Kentucky, from 1994 to 1996.