Johnson State Names Miles Smith, Jr. Head Coach

The Johnson State College athletic department has hired Miles Smith Jr. ’09 as the assistant athletic director and head men’s basketball coach effective August 10th.  Smith replaces Tommy Verdell who served as head coach for two years before leaving to be the assistant director of athletics and compliance officer at Bates College.

Athletic Director, Jamey Ventura is looking forward to welcoming Smith to the department. Ventura said, “Miles will be a strong addition to our staff. As a dedicated alumni and proven head coach, Miles will serve as an important touch point for student-athletes, alumni and community members alike.”

Prior to taking the helm at Johnson, Smith was the first ever head men’s basketball coach and admissions recruiter at the newly co-ed Wilson College in Pennsylvania. Prior to that, Smith spent one year at The College of New Jersey. As an assistant coach, he was responsible for player development, scouting, game day preparation and management, and recruiting of potential athletes for the Lions.

Smith also spent three seasons as an assistant basketball coach at Mercer County Community College, where he was involved in all aspects of the program, including player development and recruitment, and providing academic support for student-athletes. In 2010, he helped coach the Vikings to the Region 19 Championship and an appearance in the NJACC National Tournament.

Coach Smith is a 2009 graduate of Johnson State College, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology/ Sociology. Prior to Johnson State, Smith also attended Mercer County Community College where he graduated with an associated degree in Liberal Arts in 2005. Smith was a four year starter throughout his collegiate career, and was named team captain and President of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) during his senior year at Johnson State.

“I am grateful to be a part of the bright future that Johnson State College Athletics is building. Johnson State is certainly a place that no other institution in the world can match. It is an honor to come back to Johnson State and lead the men’s basketball program. I truly am excited about the opportunity to work with the student-athletes in helping them grow as individuals and achieve their goals.”

Smith played in all 51 games during his two seasons with Johnson State and started in all 26 games as a senior and led the Badgers to the North Atlantic Conference playoffs.  A tenacious and suffocating defender, Smith averaged 3.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game while blocking 30 shots and collecting 29 steals in his career.  Smith poured in a career-best 21 points on 9-of-14 shooting in a 74-71 loss at home to Massachusetts College on December 8, 2007.

Photo Courtesy Johnson State Athletics

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