Vicksburg, MS — Athletic Director, Dr. Darren J. Hamilton introduced Larry Smith as the new head Men’s Basketball coach today. Thunderous applause rang throughout the room when Smith took his place behind the podium to address the audience. Smith said, “It feels good to come back home.” Dubbed the nickname Mr. Mean for his rebounding style, he also stated “his number one priority would be recruiting, because there are good players out there. We just have to find them.”Â
Lettered four years in basketball at Alcorn State University, Larry Smith was part of the undefeated ’79-80’ basketball team coached by the legendary Davey L. Whitney. In 1980, he was selected as a 2nd round pick in the NBA draft by the Golden State Warriors. In an NBA career that spanned 13 years, he was a part of NBA teams: Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, and San Antonio Spurs. During his rookie year, Smith received NBA All-Rookie First Team Honors and also became the first rookie since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to finish among the top three rebounders in one season, when he averaged 12.1 boards a game. At the end of his NBA playing career, Smith has posted 5,904 (points), 8,125 (rebounds)-(3,401 offensive and 4,724 defensive), 457 (blocks) 941 (assists) and 699 (steals). As an assistant coach, he was a part of back-to-back championships with the Houston Rockets during the 1993-1994 and 1994-1995 seasons. In his last coaching job, he was an assistant coach for the L.A. Sparks, a WNBA team.