Pettway Returns To Coaching Spot
After spending the previous three seasons as the director of operations for the Alabama men's basketball team, former Crimson Tide standout guard Antoine Pettway was promoted to assistant coach, Coach Anthony Grant announced as part of several changes to his coaching staff on Monday.
"Antoine's done a great job for us," Grant said. "I think he has really grown as a coach and has prepared himself to take that next step in the coaching career. He knows what it takes at this level and I am confident that he'll step in and make a smooth transition as an assistant coach."
Actually, Pettway took one step back and then one step forward in his coaching march. He was already an assistant coach when Grant moved him to basketball operations.
Pettway finished his third season as Alabama's director of operations this past year. He was an assistant coach at his alma mater from 2008-10 and spent two seasons as an assistant coach on the Jacksonville State staff (2006-08).
The Alberta native began his Alabama career as a walk-on with an academic scholarship before earning an athletic scholarship for his sophomore season. He was an integral part of Alabama's `Elite Eight' run in 2004, starting every game at point guard. That season was the third consecutive in which he led the Tide to the NCAA Tournament after making appearances in 2002 and 2003.
"I am extremely grateful that Coach Grant has the confidence in me to give me this opportunity," Pettway said. "Coach Grant is a great mentor and leader. I have learned a great deal observing him, our players and coaches and I will work diligently to have a positive impact on our student-athletes and our program. I love the University of Alabama, our fans and the city of Tuscaloosa, and I am eager to get going."
In addition to Pettway's promotion, Grant tabbed John Brannen as associate head coach. Brannen, who has been with Grant for the past seven seasons including three years at VCU (2006-09), has spent the past four seasons as an assistant coach at UA.
Brannen is considered as one of the top assistant coaches in the nation and has played an integral role in helping the Crimson Tide to three consecutive postseason appearances and three straight 20-win seasons.
"John has done an outstanding job," Grant said. "He has been with me for the last seven years and knows our system and the expectations of our program. He is extremely organized and detailed and will be a tremendous asset in this new role."
Grant also announced the addition of new strength and conditioning coach Lou DeNeen on Monday. DeNeen, who replaces Andy Weigel, comes to UA with almost 30 years of experience in the profession.
DeNeen comes to Alabama after spending the last six years at UAB. He also had successful stints at Florida International (1991-94, 97-07) and at Cal-Berkley (1994-97).
As head strength coach for Cal's men's basketball team, DeNeen coached seven players that went on to play in the NBA, including 1996 PAC-10 Player of the Year and scoring champion Shareef Abdur-Rahim and 1997 PAC-10 Player of the Year and scoring champion Ed Gray.
In addition to DeNeen's collegiate experience, he has worked with and trained many professional athletes. His clientele includes former and current NBA, MLB and NFL players.
"I am thrilled to have someone with the experience that Lou brings," Grant said. "His energy, enthusiasm and vast knowledge will no doubt make an immediate impact on our players and our program."
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