In this series, we’ll be giving props to some of the best assistants in college basketball.
For each conference, I polled at least 20 coaches (primarily assistants) and asked for them to name the top assistant coaches in their respective league. Is it a perfect way of determining the elite assistants? Maybe not, but it seems far more accurate than any other method.
I’ve also made sure to include some info on each coach that’s recognized — as well as quotes from both their boss and another assistant in the league.
Jamal Brown, Norfolk State | The North Charleston native graduated from South Carolina State in 1997 and began his coaching career as an assistant at his alma mater from 1997-2003. He was the associate head coach at Tennessee State (2003-06) and the head coach at South Carolina State (2006-07), and then had assistant stints at Maryland Eastern Shore (2008-13), Winston-Salem State (2013-14) and North Carolina A&T (2015-16) before coming to Norfolk State in 2016.
“Jamal is the problem solver. If there is a need academically, a transcript missing, a recruit call needed, Jamal gets it done! He also has a ton of experience, which is valuable.” – Norfolk State coach Robert Jones
“Brown is a veteran coach who has been around the league and knows what it takes to complement Coach Jones. Just a solid all-around coach.” – MEAC Assistant
Ahmad Dorsett, North Carolina A&T | The DMV native played at George Mason from 1996-2000 and had assistant stints at Longwood (2003-04), Mount Olive (2008-09), Bowie State (2009-10) and Mount St. Mary’s (2010-11). He also worked as the head coach at Freedom High School in Woodbridge, Va. for four seasons. He spent seven seasons as an assistant at High Point before coming to N.C. A&T in 2018.
“Coach Dorsett has a wealth of experience in all aspects of the program. Recruiting and relationships is the easy part for Ahmad. Being prepared and being detailed at a high level every day is what makes him one of the best in the country.” – North Carolina A&T coach Will Jones
“Dorsett is a thorough recruiter and also does a good job sustaining and building relationships with those guys.” – MEAC assistant
Reggie Sharp, North Carolina Central | The former Auburn player was an administrative assistant/video coordinator at his alma mater from 2000-04, then spent one season as an assistant at Conners State College. Sharp also worked as an assistant at Mississippi Valley State (2005-07), was the associate head coach at Florida A&M (2007-11) and served as an assistant at Jacksonville State (2011-16). He joined NCCU in 2016.
“Reggie has been with me for four years and has quickly ascended to the best assistant coach in the MEAC. He’s mastered the nuances of our system along with the scouting reports and game plans. He understands winning and the everyday demands to succeed. His relationships with the players are well-respected. I expect him to be a head coach in the next year or two.” – North Carolina Central coach LeVelle Moton
“Reggie works with one of the best in the business and continually helps put winning products on and off the floor.” – MEAC assistant
C.J. Clemons, Norfolk State | Clemons graduated from Norfolk State in 2005. He was the JV coach at Booker T. Washington High in Norfolk (2008-13) and then the head coach at Bryant & Stratton. He also coached AAU ball for Boo Williams from 2009-15. Clemons has been an assistant at his alma mater since 2015.
“C.J. is the people’s champ, aka the mayor of Virginia for us! He knows everyone in Virginia and has helped our community relations and Virginia recruiting take off. We went from hardly getting Virginia kids to last year — eight out of 13 were from Virginia.” – Norfolk State coach Robert Jones
“C.J. is well-respected in the Virginia area and has all the tools and connections to coach at the next level. He’s the epitome of consistency and is always on the grind!” – MEAC assistant
Brian Graves, North Carolina Central* | The former Catawba standout played professionally for a few years and then began his coaching career as the JV coach at Heritage High from 2010-12. He was then an assistant at his alma mater from 2012-15 before spending one season as the head coach at Bryant & Stratton. Graves was an assistant at Hampton (2016-18) and Longwood (2018-19), and has been at North Carolina Central since 2019.
“Brian has immersed himself into being a strong recruiter and skill developer. His relationships in the Tidewater area have proven to be valuable.” – North Carolina Central coach LeVelle Moton
“Big-time competitor when it comes to recruiting and also a great developer of lead guards and wings. Real, genuine straight shooter [and a] hustler, as far as recruiting.” – MEAC assistant
Keith Goodie, Delaware State* | The Baltimore native and Dunbar product was a star point guard at the University of the District of Columbia. He became an AAU coach for Baltimore Select (1998-2007) before joining Todd Bozeman’s staff at Morgan State (2007-15). Goodie joined the Delaware State staff in 2018.
“Keith’s remarkable basketball IQ stems from playing for and being taught the game by Hall of Fame coaches Jerry Savage (Loyola Blakefield), Bob Wade (Dunbar) and George Leftwich (UDC). Add to that his tremendous personality and unbelievable ability to cultivate, evaluate and develop talent. Delaware State is fortunate to have his impact as we become a championship team.” – Delaware State coach Eric Skeeters
“Keith is a guy that does a lot of everything. He can recruit at a high level, but also knows how to develop kids. He has been, and will continue to be, huge for Delaware State.” – MEAC assistant
Dominique Taylor, Bethune-Cookman* | The Grand Rapids, Mich. native played at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (2005-08) and spent his first two years in coaching at Neosho County. He was an assistant at South Alabama for two years, worked at Daytona State, was an assistant for one season at Chipola and then spent time as the head coach at Southeastern Illinois CC before coming to Bethune-Cookman in 2017.
“Dominique is as good as it gets. He is loyal, intelligent, innovative and extremely hardworking. He is one of the biggest reasons for our success the last three years. His ability to connect with the players, coaches and administration is second to none. We are extremely fortunate to have him on our staff.” – Bethune-Cookman coach Ryan Ridder
“Dominique does a great job recruiting Juco kids and finding hidden gems. Intelligent coach who has a strong eye for talent.” – MEAC assistant
*Three-way tie for fifth place.