Mike Jones Introduced as Head Men's Basketball Coach
Mike Jones was officially introduced as the men’s basketball head coach at Radford University in a 45-minute long press conference Wednesday, June 15, inside the Dedmon Center.
Jones, 46, has spent the last two seasons at VCU, which included a magical run to the 2011 Final Four with wins over USC, Georgetown, Purdue, Florida State and Kansas. While on Shaka Smart’s staff, the Rams posted 55 wins over the past two seasons, the highest total over any two-year span in program history.
Along with playing a major role in the Rams’ success on the court, Jones helped land one of the top mid-major recruiting classes in the country a year ago.
“We are extremely excited to have Mike, his wife and two sons join the Radford University family,” commented Director of Athletics Robert Lineburg. “During the course of his career, Mike has demonstrated the necessary qualities and character to lead our student-athletes in the classroom, in the community and on the basketball court. His reputation as a proven mentor, coach and recruiter makes him the perfect fit for Radford University.”
Prior to his second coaching stop in Virginia, Jones served a six-year stint on Dennis Felton’s bench at the University of Georgia from 2003-09. In 2008, Georgia advanced to the NCAA Tournament when the sixth-seeded Bulldogs won four games in three days to complete the most improbable SEC Championship run in conference history.
Although the challenges at Georgia were many, Jones managed to make a name for himself as Rivals.com selected him as one of the nation’s Top-25 recruiters in 2005.
In addition to Georgia, Jones had previously worked under John Beilein at Richmond from 2000-02 and during the early stages of Beilein’s rebuilding project at West Virginia in 2002-03.
Jones’ father, Jimmy, was a star guard in the ABA from 1967-74. In 1974, Jimmy Jones signed with the Washington Bullets in the NBA, where he remained until 1977.
The Silver Spring, Md. native stayed close to home and attended Howard University, where he played basketball and majored in zoology. Jones, a four-year standout for the Bison, forged a connection with fellow Howard alum Felton (’85), who he calls the biggest influence on his coaching career.
Once Jones graduated in 1990, he began his coaching career as a high school coach at Sidwell Friends School in Washington, D.C.
In 1994, Jones took his first collegiate job – at his alma mater. In addition, he also married his college sweetheart, Sharon, that year. Jones and his wife have two sons: Nate (14) and Miles (10).
He later moved on to Furman, where he stayed from 1997-2000. He joined Beilein’s staff at Richmond in 2000 and helped the Spiders to a pair of 20-win seasons and three straight NIT berths.
View the photo gallery from the press conference.
Read what others are saying about new Radford University Head Men's Basketball Coach Mike Jones.