Hopkins Adds Wyking Jones to Coaching Staff
SEATTLE – University of Washington head coach Mike Hopkins has announced the hiring of Wyking Jones as an Assistant Coach for the Huskies. Jones brings more than 15 years of coaching experience to the UW bench as he most recently was the head coach at the University of California. Jones has been a member of some of the best coaching staffs in college basketball and has helped numerous players reach the next level.
"We are so excited to add Wyking to our staff," said Hopkins. "He has built an incredible reputation for himself in college basketball and worked with some of the great coaches in the business. He's an excellent recruiter and a great teacher of the game. Not only does he bring a wealth of experience and knowledge but he will be a tremendous asset to our program both on and off the court as a developer of student-athletes. His passion and enthusiasm is going to be incredible for our student-athletes and we are so lucky to have him on our team on Montlake. "
At his assistant coaching stops at New Mexico, Pepperdine, Louisville, Loyola Marymount and Cal prior to being named the head coach, Jones helped his programs reach 20 wins each season while also developing some of the best big men in the country. He's been a member of numerous NCAA tournament teams along with helping the Cardinal win the NCAA Championship in 2013.
"I'm truly honored to be part of Coach Hopkins' staff at Washington, said Jones. " Since he arrived on campus, I've had a tremendous amount of respect for him as a coach and person. What he has been able to accomplish in such a short time speaks for itself. During my entire coaching career, I've watched Washington from afar and have been impressed with it's history and long list of players that have gone on to be successful at the next level. Being a part of that storied history is very exciting and I'm ready to get to Seattle."
Jones' extensive experience has been showcased at every stop as he has helped numerous student-athletes succeed both on and off the court along with reaching the next level.
During Jones' first season as the head coach of California, he led the team to an upset of Stanford in Maples Pavilion for the first time since 2014. The Bears also took a key road win in a hostile Viejas Arena against San Diego State. Jones helped guide upperclassmen Kingsley Okoroh and Marcus Lee as stifling defenders in the paint, with Cal ranking 27th nationally in total blocks (149) and 30th in the nation in blocked shots per game (4.8 bpg) following regular-season play. The Bears also reached the 200-steal mark for the first time since the 2003 season. Cal finished with 220 steals -- its highest total in more than a decade -- to average 6.9 steals per game, up from 4.6 in 2017.
Jones' rookie trio of Justice Sueing, Darius McNeill and Juhwan Harris-Dyson set a strong foundation for the program moving forward, with McNeill topping Allen Crabbe's freshman record in three-point field goals made and Sueing ranking in the top five among freshman record holders in points and steals.
In the classroom, Nick Hamilton headlined the Pac-12 All-Academic team, becoming the first Golden Bear since Alex Pribble in 2007 to earn first team honors.
Prior to his tenure as head coach, Jones served as an assistant coach at Cal for two seasons under Cuonzo Martin in 2015-16 and 2016-17.
Charged with coaching Cal's big men, Jones helped forward Ivan Rabb become a two-time All-Pac-12 performer and Jaylen Brown earn All-Pac-12 and Pac-12 Freshman of the Year honors in 2015-16. In addition, center Kingsley Okoroh set a school record with 74 blocks in 2016-17.
In his first season with the Golden Bears, Jones helped steer Cal to the program's first NCAA Tournament bid since 2013 and the program's highest tournament seeding, a No. 4 seed. Cal's defense earned top marks, leading the Pac-12 with just 67.3 points allowed per game and finishing in the top three for rebounding. The Bears went 23-11 and extended their home winning streak to 19 games, dating back to the 2014-2015 season.
The Bears continued their success in 2016-17 by pushing their home winning streak to a program-record 27 games and once again led the league in defense, limiting opponents to 63.4 ppg and 40.0 percent shooting.
Throughout his career, Jones has also been instrumental in the development of 11 current and former NBA players, including Jaylen Brown, plus Terry Rozier, Gorgui Dieng, Montrezl Harrell, Tony Snell, Russ Smith and Peyton Siva.
Jones served as an assistant coach at Louisville for four seasons prior to heading back to California. During his time on the Cardinals' coaching staff, Louisville's combined record was 123-30. The Cardinals captured the 2013 NCAA Championship and reached two Final Fours.
Prior to Louisville, Jones served two seasons on the coaching staff at New Mexico where the Lobos won 52 games in two seasons alongside Steve Alford, including a school-record 30-win campaign in 2010. New Mexico finished the 2010 season ranked eighth in the Associated Press national poll.
Jones served as an assistant coach for five seasons from 2002-06 at Pepperdine, where he was the Waves' recruiting coordinator. He got his start in coaching at his alma mater, Loyola Marymount, during the 1996-97 season.
He was a standout at LMU from 1991-95 under head coach John Olive, where his 1,076 career points rank 31st all-time in the program's history. Jones also collected 493 career rebounds during his career with the Lions. He was a two-time All-West Coast Conference selection, highlighted by a 19.7 ppg average as a junior. He earned his bachelor's degree in business administration from Loyola Marymount in 1995.
Jones played professional basketball from 1995-2001 in Italy, France, Japan, Lebanon and South Korea. He also served on the staff at Nike Elite Youth Basketball for three years, where he was the Travel Team Manager for more than 45 programs.
Jones comes to Montlake with his son, Jameel, and daughter, Zoe.