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them. In Shaka, we have found someone who we knew without a shadow of a doubt could continue the excellence established by VCU basketball.”


Smart didn’t just continue that excellence. He broke the mold.


Known as a high-caliber recruiter, Smart has lived up to his bill- ing with the Black and Gold, landing back-to-back highly-touted recruiting classes. Both classes have gained national attention from ESPN.com, Scout.com and Rivals.com.


Prior to his arrival at VCU, Smart spent one season as an assis- tant with Donovan’s Florida Gators. He helped lead the program to a 25-11 season, the fifth-most wins in school history, and a berth in the NIT Quarterfinals.


Before Florida, Smart served as an assistant coach under Pur- nell at Clemson from 2006-08. During his tenure, Smart helped the Tigers to 49 wins and consecutive postseason appearanc-


PERSONAL


Birthdate: April 8, 1977 Hometown: Madison, Wisc. EDUCATION Undergraduate:


Kenyon College, 1995-1999 Master’s:


California University (Pa.), 2001 PLAYING EXPERIENCE Kenyon College, 1995-99


COACHING EXPERIENCE 1999-2001:


California University (Pa.) Assistant Coach


2001-2003: University of Dayton Director of Basketball Operations


2003-2006: University of Akron Assistant Coach


2006-2008:


Clemson University Assistant Coach


2008-2009:


University of Florida Assistant Coach


2009-present: VCU


Head Coach 30 VCU MEN’S BASKETBALL


es, including an NCAA Tournament berth in 2008.


Smart had a positive effect on Clemson in his first year, aiding the Tigers’ 25-11 record and NIT Championship game appear- ance. The 25 victories and 17-0 start tied 20-year old Clemson records. The Tigers appeared in the top 25 of the USA Today coaches’ poll for eight consecutive weeks.


Additionally, Smart played a significant role in the Tigers’ land- ing of top 100 recruits Catalin Baciu, Terrence Oglesby and Milton Jennings. While at Florida, he helped the Gators land the nation’s No. 3 recruiting class, according to ESPN.com, includ- ing McDonald’s All-American guard Kenny Boynton.


From 2003-06, Smart served as an assistant at the University of Akron. In 2005-06, he helped the Zips to a 23-10 record, the school’s highest victory total since it became a Division I pro- gram in 1980-81.


The Zips also defeated Temple in the first round of the NIT for the school’s first Division I postseason triumph. In two seasons working under Dambrot, Smart helped Akron to a 42-20 record.


Smart worked for Purnell at Dayton as director of basketball operations from 2001-03. During that time, the Flyers posted a 45-17 record and won the 2003 Atlantic 10 Championship. The 2002-03 squad finished 24-6 and earned an NCAA bid.


Smart began his coaching career as an assistant at California University (Pa.) from 1999-2001. The school had a 40-16 com- bined ledger those two seasons. During that time, Smart earned his master’s degree in social science.


Smart played his college basketball at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio and graduated magna cum laude in 1999 with a degree in history. A four-year starter and three-year captain, he holds Kenyon single-season (184) and career (542) assist marks. As a senior, he was an All-North Coast Conference se- lection and was the NCAC Scholar Athlete of the Year. He was one of 20 students selected for the 1999 USA Today All-USA Academic team and received a NCAA postgraduate scholar- ship.


A native of Madison, Wis., Smart married the former Maya Payne on May 20, 2006. The couple welcomed their first child, daughter Zora Sanae Smart, on Sept. 25, 2011.


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