Todd Golden has been hired as head men’s basketball coach at the University of Florida, Athletic Director Scott Stricklin announced on Friday.
Golden, 36, becomes the 20th head coach of the Florida Gators after guiding the University of San Francisco to 24 wins and its first NCAA Tournament bid since 1998 in the 2021-22 season. Golden led the Dons to a 57-36 record over three seasons as head coach, including 20-win seasons in both 2019-20 and 2021-22. His background includes time coaching within the Southeastern Conference and the Ivy League before his time in the West Coast Conference.
“I’m energized by the opportunity to lead an elite program at Florida, and I’m ready to get started,” Golden said. “Florida has a championship-level athletic department, university and men’s basketball program, and I embrace the standard of excellence at Florida and the passion of Gator Nation. We couldn’t be more excited about what the future holds in Gainesville.
“I also want to express my thanks to the University of San Francisco, Joan McDermott and Rev. Paul J. Fitzgerald for the incredible support they’ve given me over the past six years at USF and the opportunity to lead a special group of young men.”
“We’re incredibly excited about bringing in Todd, who is an innovative, relationship-oriented coach, to lead our men’s basketball program,” Stricklin said. “Todd brings a smart and analytics-driven approach to the game and a relational approach to leadership that puts student-athletes first. He has a wide range of experience, particularly for a coach his age, and brings an outstanding track record and high level of integrity to the job.”
Prior to being named the Dons’ head coach, Golden spent the previous three seasons as San Francisco’s associate head coach under Kyle Smith. In Golden’s six total seasons at USF, the Dons posted at least 20 wins in all seasons except the COVID-shortened 2020-21 campaign.
Golden has led the USF program in the highly-competitive West Coast Conference, which consistently ranks among the nation’s toughest mid-major conferences. Over the past three seasons, the WCC has been on average KenPom’s strongest-rated conference outside of the traditional power-six leagues and the American Athletic Conference.
During his stint as associate head coach at USF, he served as the Dons’ recruiting and defensive coordinator under Smith. San Francisco finished within KenPom’s top 100 defensively five times during Golden’s stint, highlighted by this season’s No. 21 ranking. The Dons complemented their defensive effort with a top-100 offense each of the past four seasons, including a pair of top-50 offenses in 2018-19 and 2021-22.
During Golden’s three seasons as head coach at USF, six different players received eight total all-conference accolades. Three players earned All-WCC honors in 2021-22, with Jamaree Bouyea, Yauhen Massalski and Khalil Shabazz all garnering recognition. Shabazz also earned all-conference honors in 2021, with Dzmitry Ryuny receiving an honorable mention nod. In 2020, Charles Mineland earned All-WCC honors with Bouyea and Jimbo Lull named honorable mention.
Prior to joining Smith’s staff in 2016, Golden spent two seasons at the Auburn University under head coach Bruce Pearl. Golden joined the Auburn staff as the director of basketball operations for the 2014-15 season and was elevated to an assistant coaching position for the 2015-16 campaign. He worked closely with the Tigers’ guards and handled all scheduling responsibilities. Golden also took a lead role in analytical and metrics data.
Golden spent the 2013-14 season as an assistant coach on Kyle Smith’s staff at Columbia where he helped the Lions to a 21-13 mark and a spot in the CollegeInsiders.com Tournament. In his only season at Morningside Heights he worked closely with the Lions’ defense that held opponents to a stingy 63.3 points per game, which ranked second-best in the Ivy League and 31st nationally. He also served as director of basketball operations for the 2012-13 season.
Golden played collegiately at Saint Mary’s College in Moraga, Calif., where he helped the Gaels to a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances. As a senior point guard, he ranked second in the nation with a 3.68 assists-to-turnovers ratio and led the West Coast Conference with a .574 3-point field goal percentage. The lone captain of Saint Mary’s 2007-08 team, Golden finished his career as the Gaels’ all-time leader in free-throw percentage (.852) and eighth with 269 career assists.
After earning his degree in business administration, Golden played two years professionally for Maccabi Haifa in Israel’s top division. In 2009, he was co-captain of the USA Open Team, coached by Bruce Pearl, that won gold at the Maccabiah Games. Following his playing career, he spent two years working in sales and marketing in the San Francisco Bay Area, spending time with IMG College and Comcast SportsNet Bay Area.
Golden is married to the former Megan York, who was a four-year volleyball standout at Saint Mary’s and the WCC’s Co-Freshman of the Year in 2007.