JMU Hires Morehead State’s Preston Spradlin as Head Men’s Basketball Coach

Image courtesy of JMU Athletics Communications

By Bennett Conlin

JMU hired Morehead State’s Preston Spradlin as its new head men’s basketball coach Friday. The school made the news official around 12:20 p.m. ET, sharing that he’s signing a six-year deal.

Spradlin comes to JMU after eight seasons as Morehead State’s head coach. The Eagles took off during the final four years of his tenure, winning at least 20 games in every season and making two NCAA Tournament appearances.

“Preston stood out at the top of our list as we researched candidates based upon the resume that he’s built at a very young age as a head coach,” JMU Director of Athletics Jeff Bourne said in a press release. “Once we met with him, it was even more evident that he’s the total package in a head coach. The results speak for themselves, but beyond the results we found a genuine and authentic coach and teacher who cares about his student-athletes, about his institution and the community. 

He led Morehead State to a 26-9 record this season, with the Eagles earning a 14 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Spradlin, a two-time OVC Coach of the Year, is considered a rising star in the coaching ranks at just 37 years old.

Prior to being Morehead State’s head coach, Spradlin was an assistant at Morehead State from 2014-16. He also served as a graduate assistant under John Calipari at Kentucky from 2009-11.

“My family and I are extremely excited for the opportunity to lead the JMU program and take over during a monumental time for the University!” Spradlin said in a press release. “Throughout this process it was of the upmost importance that we not only found a great basketball program but also a caring community that we can embrace and continue to raise our family.” 

Editor’s note: Thanks to Christopher William Jewelers for their advertising support this season.

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