Brian Gregory: Why He is Still Head Coach


Georgia Tech Basketball Head Coach Brian Gregory’s time in charge of the program could be described as tenuous at best.

Gregory completed his fourth season at the helm of Tech’s basketball program this past season, producing another disappointing result after 3 consecutive losing campaigns, with no NCAA Tournament or NIT Appearances.

=- Related: Brian Gregory: Why Georgia Tech Can’t Afford to Fire Him =-

The former head basketball coach at Dayton, Brian Gregory found success in the Atlantic 10 Conference, leading the Flyers to two NCAA Tournament appearances in his 7 years with the team. Georgia Tech expected that Gregory would bring similar success to Georgia Tech after the departure of long-time Head Coach Paul Hewitt.

“During his tenure as Tech’s Head Basketball Coach, Brian Gregory has produced a record of 55-71, as well as a record of 19-51 against fellow ACC teams.”

During his tenure as Tech’s Head Basketball Coach, Brian Gregory has produced a record of 55-71, as well as a record of 19-51 against fellow ACC teams. 19-51. Granted the ACC is a stacked conference with the likes of Duke, Virginia, Louisville, Notre Dame, UNC, (you get the picture); but the fact remains that no matter the perceived difficulty of the conference, Gregory has not produced any semblance of results within conference play or against non-conference opponents.

Brian Gregory’s most unforgivable sin in the eyes of Georgia Tech fans is the lack of progress in rebuilding a once respected basketball program. Tech’s basketball program was once called “Point Guard U”, churning out top guards and NBA prospects such as Stephon Marbury, (3D) Dennis Scott, Mark Price, and Kenny Anderson.

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Georgia Tech’s program has also produced other successful NBA products in the past ten years in the form of Chris Bosh, Jarrett Jack, Derrick Favors, Thaddeus Young, and Iman Shumpert. This column is not a history lesson; it is an indictment of Brian Gregory’s severe lack of recruiting prowess and lack of coaching skill to coax every last iota of talent and effort out of his players. There is a reason that Georgia Tech has not had a player taken in the first round of the NBA Draft during Gregory’s tenure at the helm.

Former coach Paul Hewitt had success during his time at Tech, leading the program to five NCAA Tournaments and National Runner-Up status in 2004. He recruited players like Chris Bosh and Thaddeus Young, consistently injecting the program with talent. Though he may not have been the best coach on the court, Hewitt always seemed to keep the program contending with fellow ACC teams. Gregory has not shared similar success.

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Another glaring flaw in Gregory’s coaching acumen is his inability to keep talent on his team. Robert Carter Jr., arguably the best player in Tech’s program in 2014, decided to transfer to the University of Maryland, leaving the team in shambles going into this past season. Good players want to play at a school where they can win and without a good coach at the helm, it is next to impossible.

Mar 10, 2015; Greensboro, NC, USA; Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets head coach Brian Gregory coaches against the Boston College Eagles in the first half during the first round of the ACC Tournament at Greensboro Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Evan Pike-USA TODAY Sports

A good coach does not have to produce immediate results, but just some semblance of progress. Up I-85 and SR-316 in Athens, Mark Fox has changed the culture of the basketball program at the University of Georgia, leading them to consecutive winning seasons and two NCAA Tournament appearances as head basketball coach. He has also had players taken in the First Round of the NBA Draft, such as Kentavious Caldwell-Pope of the Detroit Pistons.

So the question is why is Gregory still head coach? Georgia Tech AD Mike Bobinski could have let him go this offseason but opted against it. It boils down to money, as Tech is still paying Paul Hewitt. If that was not the case, Gregory would be long gone.

With one more season on Brian Gregory’s contract, the Georgia Tech basketball program should prepare for another losing season. Perhaps with Gregory’s job on the line he can surprise his doubters — though that remains highly unlikely.

Next: Paul Johnson: Best Coach in ACC?

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