FIU Head Men’s Basketball Coach Jeremy Ballard announced on Wednesday the hiring of Zavier Anderson as assistant director of basketball operations. Anderson joins the Panthers after serving as director of basketball operations for the previous three seasons at Conference USA member UAB, and in the same capacity at The Citadel during the 2014-15 campaign.
“The addition of Zavier Anderson to the coaching staff is a monumental addition to our program,” said Ballard. “Along with being a key contributor to an NCAA tournament program as a player at Clemson, Zay brings invaluable experience at various stops as a coach. His familiarity with C-USA coupled with prior working relationships with me and our staff will mark a smooth transition in our first year at FIU. Zay’s character, work ethic, enthusiasm, and knowledge represent everything we are building with our culture.”
“I am extremely excited about joining the staff here at FIU,” said Anderson. “After working with Coach Ballard during his first stint at VCU, I was convinced then that he would someday be a head coach. His ability to bring out the best in those that he comes in contact with is something that I admire. When Coach Ballard called me about this position, I was excited at the opportunity to become part of his staff. I look forward to being a part of this team that will bring success to FIU.”
In his first year at UAB, Anderson was part of a staff that led the Blazers to the school’s first-ever Conference USA Tournament Championship and an impressive, 60-59, win against No. 3 seed Iowa State in the second round of the 2015 NCAA Tournament.
Anderson helped UAB reach new heights in during the 2015-16 season, as the Blazers won C-USA and set a school record with 26 wins, including 16 in league play. UAB would go on to earn a bid to the NIT to mark the second consecutive year in which the Blazers have qualified for the postseason.
A 2011 graduate of Clemson, Anderson went to The Citadel after spending two seasons as a graduate assistant under Shaka Smart at VCU.
Anderson was part of a VCU staff that advanced to the third round of the NCAA Tournament during the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons. He assisted Smart and his staff in the development of players such as Darius Theus (CAA Tournament MVP, 2011-12; Lefty Driesell Defensive All-America Team, 2012-13) and Melvin Johnson (Atlantic-10 All-Rookie Team, 2012-13).
Anderson was involved in the day-to-day operations of the Rams’ basketball program. He also assisted in the preparation of film and scouting reports and aided the coaching staff during practices and drills.
A walk-on at Clemson, Anderson appeared in 56 games, scored 47 points, handed out 44 assists and forced 26 steals during his four-year career. During his senior season in 2010-11, he earned the Most Improved Player Award due in large part to playing the most minutes of any walk-on in Tigers history. He made four starts for former head coach Oliver Purnell and was part of a Clemson team that finished 22-12 en route to winning its first NCAA Tournament game in 14 seasons.