Skinn named Assistant Basketball Coach at Maryland

Photo Courtesy Maryland Athletics

A Takoma Park, Maryland native with deep DMV ties and Big Ten and Big East coaching experience, Tony Skinn joined Kevin Willard‘s staff on Thursday.

Skinn comes to Maryland after one season at Ohio State. An 11-year coaching veteran known for his recruiting, especially in the DMV area, and player development, Skinn worked with Willard from 2018-21 at Seton Hall where the Pirates won 55 games over a three-year span including the 2020 Big East Regular Season Championship.

“Tony is a perfect fit to join our staff here at Maryland,” said Willard. “He’s a Maryland guy. A DMV guy. He grew up here, played here, coached here and is as connected to the area as any coach. He’s a great friend and we enjoyed great success at Seton Hall. He knows the Big Ten and has developed some of the most talented young players in the nation.  I’m so excited to welcome him and his family home to Maryland.”

“Coming back home to work at Maryland, a school I grew up just miles away from, is a dream come true for me,” said Skinn. “Coach Willard is going to build something very special at Maryland. I can’t wait to get out and recruit the best kids in the DMV and around the country and help them develop into stars for the Terps. Our family is thrilled to be coming home.”

This past season at Ohio State, Skinn worked closely with freshman guard Malaki Branham, who earned Big Ten Freshman of the Year honors. Branham averaged 13.7 points and 3.6 rebounds per game while shooting over 49 percent from the floor. He was one of just five freshmen nationally and one of only two from a Power 5 school to have multiple 30-point games this season, and both of his came on the road. Skinn was also in charge of scouting personnel. 

Skinn and the Buckeyes won 20 games and advanced to the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament. 

At Seton Hall, Skinn coached the guards and helped Quincy McKnight become one of the best point guards in the Big East. He also played an influential role in the development of Myles Powell who was the 2020 Big East Player of the Year. Skinn was part of the Pirates’ fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance in 2019 which was a program record. The Pirates also won a BIG EAST regular-season title in 2020 and were on track for another NCAA Tournament bid. 

Prior to joining Seton Hall, Skinn’s had a three-year successful run as an assistant coach at Louisiana Tech, as the Bulldogs won 63 games during his tenure, including back-to-back 23-win seasons and a pair of top-four finishes in Conference USA. In three seasons with Skinn’s aid, Louisiana Tech student-athletes garnered five All-Conference USA selections and three Conference USA All-Freshmen picks. Skinn was instrumental in the development of point guard DaQuan Bracey, who set a Louisiana Tech and Conference USA record for most assists by a rookie (193) in 2016-17 en route to Conference USA Freshman of the Year honors. Bracey also finished the season with the sixth-best assist/turnover ratio in the country at 3.51.

Skinn worked in the DMV area for four years prior to his collegiate coaching start. He native served as the director of athletics at the Paul International High School in Washington, D.C., and was an assistant coach for NIKE Team Takeover, one of the premier AAU programs in the country. While working for NIKE Team Takeover, he helped recruit and develop student-athletes who went on to earn Division I college scholarships.

Having grown up less than 10 minutes from Maryland’s campus, Skinn played college basketball at George Mason, where he was a 1,000-point scorer and two-time All-CAA selection. His nine steals against Northeastern on Jan. 19, 2006, set a George Mason and CAA conference record that still stands today.

Skinn and his George Mason teammates were the top college basketball story in 2006 when the Patriots earned an at-large bid into the NCAA Tournament as a No. 11 seed and upset No. 6 seed Michigan State, No. 3 seed North Carolina, No. 7 seed Wichita State and No. 1 seed Connecticut en route to the NCAA Final Four. The March Madness run was deemed one of the most improbable and unexpected performances in college basketball history.

After making history at George Mason, Skinn went on to play professionally in Europe for many years, including three in France. In 2012, he was a member of the Nigerian national team that qualified for the Olympics in London by finishing third at the FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Caracas, Venezuela. He averaged 10 points a game during the tournament as Nigeria upset Greece in the quarterfinals, lost to Russia in the semifinals but then topped the Dominican Republic to earn the final Olympic qualifying berth. In London, Skinn and Nigeria won their first Olympic preliminary round game, defeating Tunisia, 60-56, before finishing 10th in the tournament.

Tony and his wife Weyni have three children, Isaiah, Liam and Noelle.

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