Maligi hired as hoops assistant

As several reports have helped confirm, new SMU men's basketball coach Larry Brown has hired away Houston assistant Ulric Maligi to be a part of his staff. A young coach with Texas ties, Maligi is exactly the type of coach Brown needed on board. Former Illinois assistant Jerrance Howard is expected to join the staff, too.

As first reported by Sam Khan Jr., the University of Houston beat writer for the Houston Chronicle, new SMU men's basketball coach Larry Brown has hired Cougars assistant, Ulric Maligi.

Former Illinois assistant Jerrance Howard is expected to be join the staff as well, as has been widely reported even before the Brown news became official last week.

Maligi, 27, hails from Arlington and went to Bowie High School. He got his coaching start in the Dallas-For Worth area with the Dallas Mustangs, a local AAU team. There he coached guys like Wesley Johnson (Timberwolves, by way of Syracuse) and Anthony Randolph (Timberwolves, by way of LSU).

In other words, he's got the Texas roots and connections Brown needed on board.

Maligi graduated from Howard University and also spent time as a student assistant there. Other previous assistant jobs include stops at UT-Arlington, Stephen F. Austin and most recently, the past two years at UH under James Dickey.

A proven recruiter in the state, Maligi got two Top 100 prospects—Danuel House and Danrad Knowles—to Houston last year. Howard, also a recruiting ace, recruited practically every player to Illinois while he was on staff.

SMU has seven players on its roster from the DFW area and some have known Maligi since they were in middle school.

The status of Illinois State head coach Tim Jankovich coming in as coach-in-waiting is still unknown, but at his introductory press conference on Monday, Brown said that he's had "thousands" of people contact him in hopes of landing a job on the Mustangs' new staff.

This is the second assistant the Mustangs have snagged from Houston this offseason, the first being new wide receivers coach/co-offensive coordinator Jason Phillips.

Both Howard and Maligi are incredibly impressive hires and just the type of gunpowder to get SMU on the right track as it heads for the Big East.

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