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NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana's Gary Smith was named Wednesday a men's basketball assistant coach at Alcorn State University in Lorman, Miss.

Smith was associated with XULA basketball the past nine seasons — four as a student-athlete (2012-16) and five as a member of the coaching staff (2016-21). XULA was 185-94 (.663) during Smith's tenure — 92-40 (.697) as a player and 93-54 (.633) as a coach — and won a collective six Gulf Coast Athletic Conference championships and qualified for seven NAIA national tournaments.

Smith's 131 games played are a XULA career record.alcn gary SmithSmith

"I am excited for the opportunity to work with one my coaching mentors, Landon Bussie," Smith said. "Coach Bussie has been a major inspiration in my growth as a young coach. I thank Xavier for giving me the opportunity to live out my dream. I thank all the coaches who have played an integral part in my development: Dannton Jackson, Alfred Williams, Tyrone Mitchell, Ryan DeRousselle, Nick Haywood, Devin Andrew and Rhossi Carron. Working with coach Williams has been a joy. He is an exceptional man who deserves the highest praise. I want to give a special thank you to the young men who came through our program — you guys make our jobs easier. I also thank the entire XULA Student Affairs staff, especially Chermele Christy — thank you for pushing me outside of my comfort zone every day.

"I am ready to accept the challenge of coaching in Division I. Xavier has equipped me with the tools that will allow me to tackle and defeat any challenge. Lastly, I thank my parents for their continuous support and love. This opportunity does not exist without you guys. I love y'all. Let's work!"
Alcorn State is a member of NCAA Division I and the Southwestern Athletic Conference. Bussie, like Smith, is a XULA graduate and former coach. Bussie was hired in April 2020 as Alcorn's head coach.
Smith is a NOLA native and a 2012 graduate of The Village School in Houston. In addition to is XULA coaching duties, he worked on campus as assistant director of residential operations.


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