Coaching Profile: Brad Jones

April 30th, 2014 | by David J Smith
Chris Covatta/NBAE/Getty Images

Chris Covatta/NBAE/Getty Images

Last week, Utah Jazz president Randy Rigby suggested that the franchise could possibly interview over 20 potential candidates for the vacant head coach position. By all accounts, the Jazz will be thorough and comprehensive in their search. The great Jody Genessy shared some of Rigby’s insights last week. It sounds like the process will entail former players (including “iconic” ones–John Stockton, anyone?), previous NBA head and assistant coaches and those who have toiled in college and overseas.

Utah does not have look far for a candidate who has had some of these varied experiences. As is the case with Alex Jensen, Brad Jones is  another familiar face who will most likely be considered.

Jones is a basketball lifer, much like his uncle: Jerry Sloan. He played for Lambuth University, where he was the team captain his senior campaign. After earning his master’s degree in health and public education, he returned to his alma mater to serve as head coach from 1995-2001. His teams were successful, winning a pair of conference championships. Jones twice earned the honors of Mid-South Conference Coach of the Year.

After leaving Lambuth, he started his tenure with the Utah Jazz, functioning as a regional scout from 2001-2007, after which he was tabbed to be the head coach for the short-lived Utah Flash in Orem, Utah. The D-League expansion team enjoyed success during his time; Jones posted an 84-66 record. The Flash made two trips to the postseason, including the 2009 Developmental League Finals. His teams were entertaining and energetic.

During his time in Orem, he was able to coach eight different players who were called up to the NBA 13 times. 12 different NBA players were assigned to have stints with Jones and the Flash, including Utah Jazz players Kyrylo Fesenko and Morris Almond.

Jones then joined Dennis Lindsey and company in the San Antonio Spurs system, coaching their D-League entry, the Austin Toros. As is the case with anything Spurs-related, the Toros were first-class, winning the championship under Jones’ helm in 2012.

After spending 2012-13 with the Jazz as a player development coach, he spent last season as an assistant coach for Tyrone Corbin, assuming the spot left open when Jeff Hornacek was giving the opportunity with the Phoenix Suns.

On a side note, his wife, Lori, is also an athlete and coach. Like her husband, she was inducted into the Lambuth Hall of Fame and currently is the head women’s basketball coach at Southeastern Louisiana University.

Jones seems to be liked by Utah’s players. His teams have been prepared and tough. And once again, he is a known commodity. While he has ties to Corbin and Sloan, Jones would undoubtedly add his own style and structure to the team, should he be named as the next coach of the Utah Jazz.

David J Smith

David J Smith

Besides writing for Salt City Hoops, David contributes to the Utah Jazz coverage for the Deseret News and has written for the Utah Jazz website and (now Basketball Insiders). He graduated from BYU and works for LDS Philanthropies. He and his incredibly patient wife, Elizabeth, have some amazing children--four girls and two boys. Voted "Most Likely to Replace Jerry Sloan" in high school.
David J Smith

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  1. matt says:

    He was my #1 choice for Jazz. He put in the time, and if not given the HC, he should be an assistant.

    Ever since I heard Messina was an option, I wanted him instead because of the international recognition with him as a Jazz coach. But I don’t think he will be our coach. So Brad Jones is the man for the job. We always give the job to in house assistants, so it is only befitting Jones gets it, because Sanders and Lowe were only here because of Corbin, and all 3 should be long gone by now.

    • David J Smith says:

      I think he is highly regarded by the Jazz, so should remain in some function or another. Then again, other coaches may tap him to be a lead assistant. Bottom line is he’ll have options.

      • Stephan says:

        He has one year of nba bench coaching experience and one year behind the bench under a head coach that was not well respected in the league or by the jazz apparently. Alex Jensen has a much more impressive resume, but not related to Jerry Sloan, which clearly disadvantaged him. I think saying jones would have many options outside the jazz organization is a stretch.

  2. Clint Johnson says:

    I think Jones is a good coach but, personally, I don’t feel he’s a wise investment as head coach at this point in his career. Give him several more seasons as an assistant, then maybe. Also, I think it would be wise to move in a truly new direction, something completely outside the Layton/Sloan lineage. I think there are better candidates myself, including Alex Jensen, though I don’t quite think he’s ready for a head position either.

    • David J Smith says:

      That is a very valid viewpoint and I am not opposed to that at all. I think Jones will be considered, but there is something to be said about a totally fresh perspective. Good thoughts, as usual, Clint.

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