Head coach Todd Phillips has announced the hiring of Louis Wilson as an assistant coach on his men’s basketball staff at Utah Valley. Wilson comes to UVU after working the past four seasons as the head coach at UT Tyler.
“We are thrilled to add Louis Wilson to our coaching staff,” said Phillips. “This is a terrific addition to UVU basketball. Louis brings a wealth of experience and success as both assistant and a head coach. He is a tremendous coach and even better human being. Excited to have his experience and expertise on our staff. Coach Wilson is connected throughout the country. He is a relationship guy, and our guys will love him and his family.”
Wilson brings 32 years of collegiate basketball coaching experience, including 23 years at the Division I level to Utah Valley.
Wilson finished his four years at UT Tyler with 45 wins. He led UT Tyler through the final two seasons of the mandatory three-year transition period from NCAA Division III to NCAA Division II in 2019-20 and 2020-21 and established the Patriots as an immediate contender in the Lone Star Conference in the first full year of Division II membership. The Patriots went 16-10 during that season, a continued improve as the team earned its first-ever national ranking at the Division II level during the 2021-22 season.
UT Tyler improved from an 8-19 record in the second year of the transition period in 2019-20, to a 12-10 mark in a shortened 2020-21 season in the institution’s final year of the transition period.
UT Tyler won 10 out of the final 11 games during that 2020-21 season, including a signature 61-60 win over then-ranked no. 10 Texas A&M-Kingsville, securing the program’s first ever win over a nationally ranked Division II opponent.
“I have been blessed to coach major college basketball for the majority of my life,” said Wilson. “The opportunity to pour into young people, the way my high school coach, Chuck White, and my college coach, Larry Holley poured into me to help them improve in every facet of their being is the honor of my life. To continue that work at a place as special as Utah Valley University means the world to me. Utah Valley is a premier basketball program in the Western United States, and I am grateful to coach Phillips for trusting me to help him grow the program.”
Wilson spent the 2018-19 season as the Associate Head Coach at Grand Canyon where he helped the team to a 20-win season for the fourth-consecutive season. GCU finished the 2018-10 season with a 20-14 mark and fell one game shy of reaching the NCAA Division I Tournament with an appearance in the WAC Championship game.
Prior to his time at GCU, Wilson spent three seasons as an assistant at Utah State University (2015-18) where he helped develop the 2017 Mountain West Conference Freshman of the Year in Kolby McEwen and current Cleveland Cavalier Sam Merrill. Merrill holds career records in 16 different Utah State statistical categories, including points, assists, steals, three-point field goals made, and three-point field goal percentage.
He spent five years as the head coach at Division II Adams State of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC). He led Adams State to a 95-46 record from 2010-15 and led the program to three consecutive appearances in the NCAA Division II National Tournament from 2010-13.
He finished his career at Adams State as the program’s all-time leader in winning percentage during his five-year tenure (67.4) and established the program as a two-way threat in Division II, ranking among the top 20 teams in scoring annually and leading the nation in steals and opponent turnovers in 2011-12. The Grizzlies went 73-37 in RMAC games with Wilson at the helm from 2010-15 and received at-large bids into the Division II National Tournament in each of his first three seasons.
Wilson established himself as a premier Division I assistant prior to accepting his first head coaching role at Adams State and served as Associate Head Coach at Cal State Northridge from 2006-10. He was a member of a Matador staff at CSUN that led the team to an NCAA Tournament in 2009.
Prior to his time at CSUN, Wilson served as Assistant Coach at Idaho State from 1998-2006 and at Southern Utah from 1992-98.
As a player, Wilson was an all-state guard and two-time state champion at Anchorage East High School in Alaska before playing for Trenton (Mo.) Junior College and William Jewell College in Liberty, Mo. His 1987-98 NAIA quarterfinals team was inducted into the William Jewell Hall of Fame. He was recently inducted into the 2023 North Central Missouri College Athletics Hall of Fame for his contributions as a player/contributor.
Wilson grew up as the ninth of 10 children in The Bronx of New York City before moving to Alaska at age 10. A basketball camp at Anchorage East High School led to a bond with legendary prep coach Chuck White, who became a father figure to him and his assistant coach at Adams State.
Wilson and his wife, Andrea, have four children: Jacques Wilson, Kaden Wampler, Keawe Wilson and Kalea Wilson.