Jefferson departs Duke Basketball staff; Named Boston Celtics Assistant Coach

Former Duke men’s basketball standout and assistant coach Amile Jefferson has been hired to an assistant coaching position by the Boston Celtics.

Jefferson, who entered the coaching ranks as the Blue Devils’ director of player development in 2021 and was promoted to assistant coach this past season by head coach Jon Scheyer, played for Duke from 2012-17 and won a national championship in 2015.

“Amile is a rising star in the coaching profession and I’m so excited and proud of him for earning this opportunity with one of the NBA’s iconic franchises,” said Scheyer. “The Celtics are getting a winner — one of the hardest working, most passionate, positive and dedicated people I know. He is a tremendous teacher of the game and his ability to connect with players is innate. I can’t thank Amile enough for all he’s meant to me and our program.”

Jefferson joins a Celtics organization where he will coach his former Duke teammate Jayson Tatum, a four-time NBA All-Star and three-time All-NBA pick. Jefferson was a senior captain for the Blue Devils during Tatum’s freshman campaign in 2017, before Tatum was drafted No. 3 overall by the Celtics.

“Duke has meant the world to me — this place is home,” said Jefferson. “I’m so grateful to have earned my degree, played and began my coaching career here. I can’t thank Coach K, Coach Scheyer, the players and our staff enough. Although I’m going to miss Durham and my Duke family tremendously, the Brotherhood is forever. This opportunity with the Boston Celtics was something that felt like the right next step in my journey. The Celtics are one of the most elite professional franchises in sports. I’m honored to be able to learn from everyone in this organization. I wish our guys at Duke all the best, and I know great things are in store for Jon and the program.”

After graduating from Duke, Jefferson’s professional playing career included a stint with the Celtics in 2020 and three seasons with the Orlando Magic (2018-20). He also played on a two-way contract with the Minnesota Timberwolves and the NBA G-League’s Iowa Wolves (2017-18) and in the Turkish Basketball Super League’s Galatasaray (2020-21) before returning to his alma mater on the coaching staff in 2021.

As a five-year letter winner, a national champion and three-time team captain at Duke from 2012-17, Jefferson played in a program-record 150 games with 103 starts, averaging 7.2 points and 6.3 rebounds per contest. He played in 67 home victories (most in program history) and 124 total victories (third most in program history), while his .971 home winning percentage (67-2) ranks as the second best among any Duke player.

Off the court, Jefferson remains the only player in Duke history to be named to the All-ACC Academic Team four times. He served as a team captain for three seasons – becoming the only Blue Devil in the Mike Krzyzewski era to do so – and was a finalist for the Senior CLASS Award in 2016-17. He earned his undergraduate degree in history from Duke in 2016 and received a master’s degree from Duke’s Divinity School in 2017.

Tagged with: