Jones went 14-5 as the Aggies acting head coach Men's Basketball 6/18/2020 4:42:00 PM
EAST GREENSBORO – Willie (prefers Will) Jones has been named North Carolina A&T's head men's basketball coach as announced by Director of Athletics Earl M. Hilton III on Thursday.
Jones will be the Aggies 11th head men's basketball coach of the NCAA modern era that started in 1952.
A press conference to introduce Jones will start at 11 a.m., Tuesday, June 23 in front of the entrance of Corbett Sports Center on the John W. Mitchell Drive side of the facility. The press conference will be invitation only and disposable masks will be distributed.
"I am delighted to see coach Jones get this opportunity," said Hilton. "Will did a wonderful job last season of keeping our men's basketball team focused on success on the court and in the classroom, so we know he is committed to creating a championship culture while also making sure our student-athletes graduate and are prepared to be positive contributors to society."
It's official: Will Jones is N.C. A&T Aggies' men's basketball coach By Ed Hardin firstname.lastname@example.org
N.C. A&T coach Will Jones during the game against N.C. Central. Woody Marshall/News & Record
Will Jones finally got the call.
The interim head basketball coach at N.C. A&T since December, Jones was at home when the phone rang and the interim tag disappeared.
“It’s been a long process, but it was well worth it,” Jones said. “I knew that if I was just patient, good things would happen.”
Jones took over the Aggies basketball program around Christmas when former head coach Jay Joyner was suspended. The reason for the suspension has never been disclosed.
Jones took over in the days preceding a trip to play Illinois, a trip that ended up being the beginning of a wild ride for the coach and his players. A&T would go 14-5 under Jones, winning 12 of 16 MEAC games in the process. He would be named conference coach of the year.
It seemed a foregone conclusion that he would formally be named head coach, but the process took a while longer than anyone thought.
Details of the contract have yet to be released. Joyner had a four-year contract at $125,000 a year.
“You go through the process watching the hiring and firing of college basketball coaches, and looking at people doing press conferences and wondering if I would get the opportunity to do it,” Jones said. “So it’s a relief, but there’s work to do.”