With all three spots on the coaching staff and a director of operations position needing to be filled, Louisiana Tech head coach Eric Konkol added the first piece on Tuesday by announcing Tony Skinn as an assistant coach.
Skinn had an illustrious playing career as a three-year letterwinner at George Mason, two of which was coached by Konkol, and as a professional where he played overseas and took part in the 2012 Olympics as a member of the Nigerian national team.
Most recently, he has served as athletics director for Paul International High School in Washington, D.C. In addition, he served as an assistant coach for NIKE Team Takeover, one of the top five AAU programs in the country.
“I have known Tony for many years after recruiting and coaching him at George Mason and he is an excellent example of the kind of Players Program we strive to build at Louisiana Tech,” Konkol said. “Tony was a talented and hardworking player and has the same qualities as a coach. Our student-athletes will benefit greatly from his vast experiences all over the world and at multiple levels. I am very happy he is joining us.”
While serving as an assistant coach, Skinn was primarily focused on recruiting and player development. He helped develop the classes of 2013 and 2014 which included 20+ Division I signees such as James Palmer (Miami), Tre Campbell (Georgetown) and Dion Wiley (Maryland).
“I would like to thank Tommy McClelland and Eric Konkol for this amazing opportunity to be a part of the Louisiana Tech family,” Skinn said. “Having been coached by coach Konkol and now coaching alongside him is an unbelievable feeling. Konkol has proven over the years to be committed to excellence and player development. I am excited to be a part of such a rich program and am dedicated to its success.”
As a starting point guard for Nigeria, Skinn helped his native country defeat the Dominican Republic to earn the last spot in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. He went on to average 10 points per game in the FIBA Olympic qualifiers.
Prior to playing in the capital of England, Skinn played professionally all over Europe. He spent three years in France and a year in Italy, Germany and Israel.
A big part of the opportunity given to him overseas was as a result of his collegiate career which ended with a bang by helping lead George Mason on an amazing run to the Final Four as a senior in 2006.
The Patriots ended up posting a 23-7 record during the regular season and although they end not win the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) tournament title, they were award an at-large bid as an 11 seed.
George Mason went on to upset Michigan State, defending champion North Carolina, Wichita State and top-seeded UConn to reach the Final Four, becoming only the second double-digit seed in history to do so.
The team’s magical run came to an end there with a loss to eventual national champion Florida. In the process, Skinn shined by scoring 14 points against WSU, 10 against UConn and 13 in the loss to the Gators.
In his senior season, he averaged 12.6 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game. For his career as a Patriot, he averaged 11.6 points per game while tallying 1,079 career points which currently ranks 27th in program history.
His hiring is pending the approval of the Board of Supervisors for the University of Louisiana System.