Tony Jones has been named Oakland University men’s basketball assistant coach, announced by Greg Kampe on Tuesday. Jones, a native of Detroit, has 19 years of coaching experience at the collegiate level.
“I’m very excited to join the Oakland University basketball family,” said Jones. “I’d like to thank Greg Kampe and the administration for allowing me to be a part of an outstanding athletic department. I’ve known Coach Kampe for over 20 years and I have always respected his accomplishments and success.
“In my mind Greg is one the most talented coaches in the nation and I am excited to be working with him. I’m looking forward to coming in and blending with the coaches with the mindset to help Oakland compete for another championship and the opportunity to play in the postseason. Having coached in the Horizon league, the experience of being familiar with the landscape and the venues gives me a unique perspective of knowing what it takes to be successful in a competitive conference!”
Jones spent 12 years on Bruce Pearl’s coaching staff at Milwaukee, Tennessee and Auburn. The two reached the NCAA tournament eight times. During his time at Tennessee, he led the Volunteers to five straight SEC wins while serving as interim head coach over eight games.
Prior to coaching at Auburn, Jones was the head coach at Alcoa High School for two seasons, including guiding the team to a 30-6 record and an appearance in the Class AA state tournament. The PrepXtra Boys’ Basketball Coach of the Year, Jones led Alcoa to a regular season District 4-AA championship and a district tournament title.
In his 19 seasons of collegiate coaching, Jones has helped direct his teams to 11 postseason tournament bids, including eight NCAA tournament appearances. Four times (2005, 2007, 2008 and 2010) he coached teams that appeared in the NCAA Sweet 16 and one NCAA Elite Eight appearance in 2010, Tennessee’s first-ever NCAA Regional final.
Tennessee experienced unprecedented success during Jones’ six years on the bench. Tennessee averaged 24.2 wins and won three SEC Eastern Division championships. The 2008 team captured the overall SEC title outright for the first time in 41 years, won a school record 31 games and earned the first No. 1 ranking in school history.
Each of his six seasons at Tennessee resulted in a NCAA tournament appearance, including three trips to the Sweet 16. Two times Tennessee received a No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament – the highest in school history.
After helping sign a class that was ranked sixth nationally in 2006, Jones was named one of the top recruiters in the nation by Rivals.com. In 2007, Rivals.com ranked Jones as one of the top five assistant coaches in the nation.
Jones started his coaching career at his alma mater, Detroit Southwestern High School, where he served as an assistant varsity coach while also serving as head junior varsity coach from 1986-91. During this time he coached future NBA stars Jalen Rose, Howard Eisley and Voshon Lenard, leading them to the mythical USA TODAY national title in 1991. He also served as head coach of Team AAU Michigan for three years (1991-93), posting a 35-1 record and capturing two AAU state championships.