Men's Basketball - Thu, Aug. 25, 2011
College Director of Athletics Brian Evans announced the new head men's
basketball coach Thursday afternoon. Four-year Tiger assistant to Happy
Osborne, Chris Briggs, will immediately assume the leadership position, knowing
and understanding he is taking over a tradition rich program. Not only has he
been a part of that success here at Georgetown, but he was graduate assistant
and student manager for legendary coach Tubby Smith.
"Some might think we hired him because he was
the next in line," Evans said. "I don't work that way. We have standards and
traditions to uphold and just because one coach is gone doesn't mean my
expectations change. Briggs understands all of that and illustrated his clear
vision for moving this team forward after Happy Osborne's departure."
Briggs has been instrumental to Georgetown's
basketball program in the past four years, working with players individually,
breaking down film and traveling the country to find new Tiger prospects. In
that time, GC is 120-17 and 46-8 in the Mid-South Conference. The Tigers have
won three MSC regular season and tournament titles. He has worked with eight
NAIA All-Americans and 11 all-conference selections.
"I have been fortunate to learn from two of
the best coaches in the game. I am so appreciative to Happy, what he has taught
me and who he is as a person. I love him. He has prepared me for this
opportunity and it is because of him that I have the confidence to take the
next step in my career," Briggs said.
His experience and success is not limited to
Georgetown. He developed amateur and professional players from the United
States, China, Japan and Korea. He was a graduate assistant for two seasons at
University of Kentucky. The Wildcats went 50-19 overall and 23-9 in the SEC
over that time. Before his GA work, he was a student manager for UK for three
seasons. He was a member of the Seattle Supersonics training camp staff in
2006, coached at Bob Hill Pro Advantage Big Man/Guard Camp and Five Star
Basketball Camps and coordinated workouts for professional athletes such as
Erik Daniels, Chuck Hayes, Tayshaun Prince, Keith Bogans, Nazr Mohammed and
"We are excited about the future of our basketball
program under the direction of Chris Briggs," said GC president William H.
Crouch, Jr. "Our vision as an institution is to combine three powerful pillars:
academic excellence, Christian identity and strong character building
athletics. We knew any new coach of our highly visible basketball program had
to incorporate all three pillars. I'm confident our new coach will do just that,
thereby further contributing positively to our ever-growing reputation as a top
national liberal arts college."
Remaining on the sidelines is second-year
assistant and former Tiger great, Andre Mahorn.
"It's important to me that Coach Mahorn is on
my staff," Briggs said. "He and I know what it takes to be successful on- and
off-the-court. We will continue to instill these lessons to our players - the
value of hard work and the importance of an education for long-term success
Legacy and tradition are two words that have
been synonymous with GC men's basketball for nearly 60 years. Three legendary
coaches, two of which are already Hall of Famers, have built the Tigers into a
national powerhouse. In the 58 years Robert Davis, the late Jim Reid and
Osborne coached, GC went to the NAIA tournament 30 times. The Tigers hold a
national record with 20 straight appearances in Kansas City, dating back to
With the departure of Osborne, Evans knew it was
a serious task at hand to find the right candidate to take over the reins.
"We had a lot of applicants," Evans said. "It
is a testament to what we have done in our past and to Georgetown College
overall. But, I didn't need to look far for our next coach."
He actually just had to look across the hall.
Briggs wasted no time in demonstrating his passion for Georgetown basketball
and his vision for the coming years. He dusted off his resume and showed his
commitment to the Tigers, impressing Evans from the start.
"It wasn't about me at any point," Briggs
said. "We want what is best for these players we have coming in and our
tradition of excellence to continue. It has always been my goal and dream to be
a head coach, but I wanted it to be the right situation, the right place. There
is no better place to begin a coaching career than Georgetown."
"I've always believed in Chris," Osborne said
upon learning of Briggs' appointment. "He understands that Georgetown
basketball is about relationships and family. The most important thing is he
and Andre will be the kind of coaches that will be great role models for our
young men. I know how much they care about them and what people need to
understand is they were the guys that recruited our players. They were heavily
involved in getting our athletes to Georgetown. I am so pleased with our
administration in keeping this job in our basketball family."
Osborne is not the only one singing Briggs'
praises. Minnesota head coach Tubby Smith has also been a proponent of his
former GA and student manager being the Tiger head coach.
"Chris Briggs has a high basketball IQ, and I
am positive that he will continue to carry on the winning tradition at
Georgetown College," Smith said. "Chris has been working towards this goal for many
years and will work hard and do what it takes to be successful the right way.
We at Minnesota are behind him and will always be there for the Georgetown
program and Chris Briggs."
Briggs knows the shoes he steps into are
large, but he feels ready for the task at hand and is committed to keeping the
GC traditions going.
three Hall of Fame coaches is an honor. That may be a lot of pressure to some,
but I know the program and our athletes are the foundation for success at
Georgetown," Briggs said. "Our players and staff will be fully committed to
winning in everything we do, each and every day."