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Tech head basketball coach updates his team and previews Friday night game vs. Georgia
Watching practice, reception with coaches and players part of Thursday night event
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Tech's Brian Gregory takes counsel from Tom Crean -- Atlanta Journal-Constitution, March 23, 2012
Brian Gregory, who led the University of Dayton to 97 victories over his last four seasons there and worked under Tom Izzo at Michigan State when the Spartans won the 2000 NCAA Championship, was named Georgia Tech's head basketball coach on March 28, 2011.
Gregory is the 13th head coach in Yellow Jacket history.
"Brian Gregory is not only an outstanding basketball coach, but he is a tireless worker and recruiter who cares deeply about his players," former Tech director of athletics Dan Radakovich said upon his hire. "There is no question that he will succeed as basketball coach at Georgia Tech, and he will win by doing things the right way."
Gregory coached eight seasons at Dayton where he compiled a record of 172-94 and participated in the NCAA Tournament or NIT five times. His 2003-04 and 2008-09 teams earned NCAA Tournament berths and last season the Flyers captured the NIT crown after beating North Carolina in the championship game.
The 1990 Oakland (Mich.) University graduate won 150 games faster (seven seasons) than any coach in Dayton history. Over the last four seasons combined, his teams went 13-4 against BCS-level teams.
Gregory clearly put an emphasis on academics during his tenure at Dayton. Entering the 2010-11 season, every senior who played for Gregory graduated (23-of-23). All seven seniors who played on the 2010 NIT title team graduated the following spring.
Despite a difficult initial campaign at Georgia Tech in terms of wins and losses, Gregory has gone about laying the foundation for similar success in the Yellow Jackets' program. Gregory's first season saw Tech score victories over a pair of NCAA Tournament teams in VCU and NC State, both away from home, and defeat Georgia in Athens for the program's first victory there in 35 years.
Tech has won 16 games each of the past two seasons, something the Yellow Jackets have not accomplished in back-to-back years since 2003-04 and only once since the mid-1990s. Tech also has beaten a top-10 team on the road each of the past two seasons (No. 6 Miami in 2013, No. 7 Syracuse in 2014) and won three ACC road games each of the past two years after winning a total of three in the four years before that. If not for a series of significant injuries to five contributing players during the 2013-14 season, the Yellow Jackets could have exhibited significant improvement in the win column as well.
The Yellow Jackets have also defeated rival Georgia for three straight years, something Tech hasn't done since the early 1990s, and beaten the Bulldogs twice in a row in Athens for the first time since 1961.
Gregory and his staff made a big splash on the recruiting trail in their first year on the job, signing four highly-regarded high school players from the Atlanta area to form a class ranked as high as 14th nationally. Tech added three more highly regarded players for the 2013-14 season and two more in the 2014 class.
They developed their first All-ACC player in 2014 in center Daniel Miller, who made the all-conference third team in 2014 as well as the ACC All-Defensive team two years in a row.
Three players - Chris Bolden, Marcus Georges-Hunt and Trae Golden - have made the ACC All-Academic team, and Georges-Hunt has been selected twice.
All nine of the four-year seniors in the Tech program since Gregory arrived have graduated, or are scheduled to, by the end of the summer following their senior seasons - Maurice Miller and Lance Storrs in 2011; Derek Craig and Nick Foreman in 2012; Pierre Jordan (graduate degree) and Mfon Udofia in 2013; Kammeon Holsey, Daniel Miller and Kammeon Holsey in 2014. Golden, a transfer from Tennessee who played his final season with the Yellow Jackets, is also scheduled to graduate in the summer of 2014.
Prior to becoming the head coach at Dayton, Gregory spent the second of two highly-successful stints at Michigan State, where he was an assistant coach for two years before being promoted to associate head coach under Izzo for the 2001-02 and 2002-03 seasons. During those four years, the Spartans won one NCAA championship (2000), made three Elite Eight appearances, two Final Fours and claimed two Big Ten Conference championships. MSU also saw four of its players selected in the first round of the NBA draft and the Spartans signed six McDonald's All-Americans during that four-year run.
A native of Mount Prospect, Ill., Gregory's first coaching job came during his first association with Michigan State in 1990 as a graduate assistant to head coach Jud Heathcote. He became a full-time assistant in 1992 and remained there when Izzo replaced Heathcote as head coach. Gregory left to work one season under Stan Joplin at Toledo in 1996, then returned to the Big Ten where he worked as an assistant coach under Kevin O'Neill at Northwestern for two seasons.
Gregory arrived at Dayton with 15 years of coaching experience, including 12 seasons in the Big Ten Conference.
At Dayton, Gregory developed a national reputation as a tireless recruiter, a sideline tactician and a coach who cares about his players - on and off the court.
In the 2010-11 season, Dayton won 22 games (22-14), won road games against Southeastern Conference (Mississippi) and Big East Conference (Seton Hall) schools, and advanced to the championship game of the Atlantic 10 Conference Tournament before losing to eventual NCAA Sweet 16 participant Richmond. The Flyers, who won more than 20 games for the fourth consecutive season, knocked off Xavier in the opening round of the A-10 Tournament.
In 2009-10, Gregory's team won 25 games (25-12) and put together an impressive March run, winning five consecutive games to capture the NIT championship. The Flyers' NIT title run included a win over Illinois State, road wins at Cincinnati and Illinois, and victories over Mississippi and North Carolina in Madison Square Garden.
Dayton began the 2009-10 season in the Puerto Rico Tip-Off Classic where the Flyers defeated then-21st-ranked Georgia Tech in the opening round, 63-59, on Nov. 19, 2009.
In 2008-09, Dayton went 27-8 - the second-most single-season victories in the history of that program - including wins over Marquette and against West Virginia in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament.
In Gregory's first season at Dayton in 2003-04, he guided the Flyers to a 24-9 record including the EA Sports Maui Invitational championship (Gregory is the only rookie coach to win the prestigious early-season tournament). That Dayton team, which began the season 9-0 under its rookie coach, finished first in the Atlantic 10's West Division.
The following season, 2004-05, Gregory guided one of the youngest teams in the country (six freshmen averaged at least 11 minutes a game) to an 18-11 record, finishing tied for second in the A-10 West. CBS Sportsline.com and collegeinsider.com chose Gregory as their Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year. In both 2008 and 2009, Gregory traveled to the Persian Gulf to support the troops in the USO's "Operation Hardwood," a USO/Armed Forces Entertainment tour.
Gregory and wife Yvette have two daughters, Isabella and Elyse.
GREGORY AS A HEAD COACH
GREGORY AS AN ASSISTANT COACH