|Alma Mater:||Mount St. Mary's|
In just three seasons, head coach Jamion Christian has led Mount St. Mary’s back to the top of the Northeast Conference. After taking the Mount to the Northeast Conference title game in his first season, Christian guided the Mount to the NEC title and a berth in the NCAA Tournament in 2014. This past season, the Mount earned a top four finish in the NEC standings for the second consecutive season.
Christian led the Mountaineers to an 88-71 victory over Robert Morris in the NEC championship gamein 2014 to seal the Mount’s first bid to the NCAA Tournament since 2008. Christian’s team finished the regular season in fourth place, earning the school’s first NEC Tournament home game since 2010. The Mount staged a historic rally in that game, coming back from a 19-point deficit with just over nine minutes left to edge St. Francis Brooklyn, 72-71, in the NEC Quarterfinals. The Mount then downed second-seeded Wagner on the road in the semifinals to earn a spot in the championship game for the second consecutive season.
The Mountaineers faced Albany in the 2014 NCAA Tournament First Round in Dayton, Ohio. After falling behind 21-2 in the opening minutes, the Mountaineers roared back with a 21-2 run of its own to even the score. The Mountaineers, however, came up short in a 71-64 loss that saw a potential game-tying three-pointer in the final minute rattle in-and-out.
A 2004 graduate of the Mount, Christian was named the 22nd coach in Mount St. Mary’s history on March 26, 2012. In his inaugural season, Christian guided the Mountaineers to an 18-14 record and a spot in the NEC Championship game.
Christian’s first season definitely provided excitement as the 18 wins were the fourth-most by a Mount team since moving to NCAA Division I in 1988-89 while the team also had a nine-game win streak, the third-longest streak by a Mount team in the Division I era. It was the Mount’s first winning season since 2009-10 and the Mountaineers appeared in the NEC Championship game for the first time since 2009.
Christian refers to his team’s style of play as Mayhem, which features a pressing defense and an offense reliant on the three-point shot. The top three single-season records for three-point attempts are all during Christian's tenure, while the team set school records for three-pointers made in each of his first two seasons.
One of the youngest coaches in NCAA Division I at 32 years old, Christian’s first recruit at the Mount, guard Shivaughn Wiggins, was named the NEC Rookie of the Year in 2012-13. Under Christian, the Mount has had four players earn All-NEC honors and two more named to the All-Rookie team.
Christian was a finalist for both the Ben Jobe Award and the Joe B. Hall Award in 2013. The Ben Jobe Award is presented annually to the top minority coach in division I men's basketball., while the Joe B. Hall Award goes to the top first-year coach in Division I college basketball.
Christian was an assistant coach at Virginia Commonwealth under Shaka Smart in 2011-12, helping guide the Rams to the Third Round of the 2012 NCAA Tournament. VCU won the Colonial Athletic Association Tournament title and finished with a school-record 29 wins this year. VCU led the NCAA in steals and steals per game. Christian worked hand-in-hand with VCU starting shooting guard Troy Daniels, who broke the school record for three-pointers made.
Prior to his time at VCU, he spent three years at William & Mary. In three seasons with the Tribe, he helped usher in a new era of basketball. The Tribe made their second postseason appearance in school history in 2010 and recorded the third most wins in school history with 22.
On the recruiting trail, he aided in the Tribe's 2010 recruiting class that was ranked among the best in "Mid-Major" classes in the country and the best in the CAA by ESPN.com and Scouts, Inc. During his time with William & Mary, Christian was responsible for recruiting in Virginia, Texas and the Washington, D.C. region.
One of the foundations for Christian's style of play came from his first collegiate job as an assistant coach at Emory & Henry. In 2005-06, Emory & Henry averaged 104.3 points and 17.6 three-point field goals made per game. Christian moved on to serve as the Director of Basketball Operations at Bucknell Univeristy the next two seasons.
As a player, Christian was a three-year captain at the Mount, scoring 581 points in 90 career games and 56 starts. He led the Mount in scoring at 11.3 points per game in 2001-02 and averaged 8.2 points the following season.
During his senior year at New Kent High School, Christian led his squad to an undefeated season and a VHSL State Championship.
The Christian File
Year Overall/NEC Notes
2012-13 18-14/11-7 Advanced to NEC Championship Game
2013-14 16-17/9-7 NCAA Tournament
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING ABOUT JAMION CHRISTIAN
SHAKA SMART, VCU Head Coach
“I think he’s got a great perspective on the game, and it’s different, much different than anyone else on our staff because of his background and who he’s worked for. That’s always something you invite. You don’t want to bring someone in that has the exact same views as you and knows the same things as you because then they basically become a ‘yes’ man. Jamion’s brought up a bunch of interesting ideas that the rest of us haven’t thought of.”
TONY SHAVER, WILLIAM & MARY Head Coach
“Jamion’s work ethic and ability to relate to young people makes him a great recruiter. He displays maturity beyond his years and contributed in every facet to our program. Jamion has groomed himself by working and playing for a number of exceptional head coaches like Jim Phelan, Pat Flannery at Bucknell and Bob Johnson at Emory and Henry.”
MILAN BROWN, HOLY CROSS Head Coach
“Jamion is one of the young and talented coaches in our business. I have always liked Jamion’s leadership qualities, basketball IQ and his passion for the game. He is going to bring a ton of competitive energy to recruiting, practices and game preparation. I am extremely proud of Jamion and can’t wait to see him walking the sidelines at the Mount.”
Wilkins is in his fourth season at the Mount after spending the previous six seasons as an assistant coach at William and Mary. Wilkins is the Mount’s defensive coordinator, while also being responsible for working with the perimeter guards, recruiting, scouting, academics and scheduling.
The Mount had the top-rated defense in the Northeast Conference (NEC) last season, and has been ranked in the top four in the NEC in defensive efficiency in each of the past three seasons. One area the Mount has excelled on the defensive end is limiting the three-point basket. The Mount was ranked 30th in the nation last year after being in the top three in the nation the previous two years in three-point field goals allowed.
Wilkins has also been responsible for the Mount’s “Separation Seminar”, the team’s leadership seminars that focus on team building, goal setting and community service. The men’s basketball team has won the Mount Cup in each of the past three years. The Mount Cup is rewarded to the Mount team that excels in academics, athletics and community service.
Wilkins spent his six seasons on the staff at William and Mary under the direction of two-time Colonial Athletic Association Coach of the Year Tony Shaver. Wilkins was instrumental in implementing the offensive and defensive systems at William and Mary. His responsibilities included scouting, scheduling, recruiting, individual skill work and development of the perimeter players.
William and Mary has appeared in the CAA championship game in four of the past eight seasons, the only four championship appearances in Tribe history. Wilkins was part of the staff that saw one of the best four-year stretches in school history that culminated with a 22-win season and a berth in the National Invitation Tournament in 2010. Wilkins and Christian were on staff together at William and Mary for three seasons. As recruiting coordinator, WIlkins helped sign William and Mary's only CAA Plyer of the Year (Marcus Thornton) and CAA Defensive Player of the Year (Terry Tarpey).
Before coming to William and Mary, Wilkins was the video coordinator at N.C. State. The Wolfpack advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament in 2005-06, while amassing an overall record of 22-10. N.C. State also went 10-6 in ACC action. During the season, Wilkins was involved with various aspects of the Wolfpack program including film editing, player housing, player financial services and organizing a past player reunion. He also served as the liaison for sports marketing, handled office and player tickets and was an assistant camp director.
Wilkins served as the first assistant and recruiting coordinator for Barton College in Wilson, N.C., during the 2003-04 and 2004-05 seasons. In his time at Barton, Wilkins' primary responsibilities centered around recruiting, scouting reports, both practice and in-game coaching, development of the perimeter players and film exchange. Wilkin's final recruiting class at Barton finished their careers with a 68-12 CVAC record to go along with three regular season and three tournament championships. The group advanced to the NCAA Division II Tournament on three occasions and tallied an Elite Eight appearance in 2006 to go along with its 2007 NCAA Division II National Championship.
During his time as the recruiting coordinator at Barton, the Bulldogs signed two-time CVAC Player of the Year, Anthony Atkinson, and CVAC Freshman of the Year, Bobby Buffaloe. A trio of Wilkins recruits, including Atkinson, Buffaloe and Brian Leggett, were two-time All-CVAC selections during their careers. Wilkins also assisted in the organization and operation of the Barton Basketball Camp and served as the game day manager during both men's and women's basketball games.
After graduating from N.C. State, Wilkins served as the junior varsity coach for Apex High School in Apex, N.C. He guided the Cougars to a 17-1 mark and a first-place showing in conference play. As an assistant for the boys' varsity squad, Wilkins helped guide Apex to the state playoffs.
Wilkins graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts in history in December of 2001. He was a team manager at N.C. State, and during his time there, the program included future head coaches Sean Miller, Archie Miller, John Croce and Mark Phelps.
Wilkins lives in Thurmont, Md., with his wife, Lisa, and their one-year old daughter, Brooke.
Darryl Bruce is in his fifth season at the Mount after serving the previous six years as an assistant coach under former Mount St. Mary’s player Cliff Warren (C’ 90) at Jacksonville University. A DeMatha High School graduate, Bruce brings a wealth of Division I coaching experience to the Mount as he is entering his 24th season as a Division I assistant.
At the Mount, his responsibilities include coordinating the staff recruiting efforts, monitoring academic progress of current student-athletes and all prospective recruits, game preparation/scouting future opponents with a concentration on personnel and opponents press breaks, and the development of post and perimeter players.
During his time at Jacksonville, Bruce was responsible for working primarily with the post players, recruiting, game preparation and coaching while also coordinating scheduling of future opponents. The Dolphins won back-to-back Atlantic Sun Conference regular season championships and advanced to the postseason in three of the six years Bruce was there. He also helped mentor five All-Rookie team selections, a two time Defensive Player of the Year and three All-Conference performers, including 3 time first teamer Ben Smith, who finished his career as the school’s all-time leader in steals & assist and the second all-time leader in scoring.
Bruce was an assistant coach at Hampton, where the team advanced to a pair of MEAC championship game appearances. In addition, he helped coach seven All-MEAC players in his time at Hampton, including Devin Green, who went on to play for the Los Angeles Lakers. Also under his tutelage, Hampton had the 2005 NCAA Division I individual leader in field goal percentage, Bruce Brown.
Prior to Hampton, Bruce spent a pair of seasons at Northeast Conference rival Wagner College. He helped guide the Seahawks to the NIT in 2002, the school’s first postseason appearance in 23 years. He also helped develop Jermaine Hall, who was the NEC Rookie of the Year and Player of the Year during his time at Wagner.
Before coaching at Wagner, Bruce spent three years as the top assistant at Howard University. At Howard, Bruce's responsibilities included recruiting prospective student-athletes, scheduling, academic counseling, team travel and acting as a liaison with on-campus departments. While there, he coached an all-conference and two all-rookie team selections. He also recruited Ron Williamson, who went on to become the MEAC Player of the Year and one of the top scorers in school history.
Prior to Howard, Bruce assisted then head coach Mike Brey and the Blue Hen staff at Delaware with game day coaching, practice coordination and acted as the academic liaison. He also was heavily involved in the recruitment and development of one of the most successful classes in Delaware history. A class that would produce four starters on back-to-back conference championship and NCAA Tournament teams, including Mike Pegues, who would go on to become a three-time first team all-league player, conference player of the year, and the school's all-time leading scorer.
Bruce came to Delaware after a one- year stint as an assistant coach at University of Maryland-Eastern Shore where he served during the 1992-93 season under head coach Rob Chavez. He was responsible for scouting, recruiting and community relations. While at UMES, Bruce was instrumental in improving the Hawks to a 12-15 mark in 1992-93, an improvement of nine wins from the previous season. The 12 victories were the most by the school in more than 10 seasons.
Bruce began his coaching career at his alma mater Towson as a student assistant under then head coach Terry Truax. He helped guide the Tigers to the East Coast Conference Title in 1989-90 and the school's first NCAA appearance in Division I. The Tigers were led by Kurk Lee, a two-time conference player of the year who went on to play for the New Jersey Nets.
Following graduation in 1990, Bruce moved to Bladensburg (Md.) High School where he served as assistant varsity and head junior varsity boy's basketball coach for two seasons. While at Bladensburg, he helped lead the Mustangs to two Maryland state playoff appearances. He has also worked numerous camps over the years including The Mason Dixon basketball camp.
Bruce resides in Frederick and is the proud father of a daughter, Amaya.
Lind is in his third season at the Mount after spending the past three years at Virginia Commonwealth University. Lind serves as the team’s Recruiting Coordinator while overseeing the “Mayhem,” the Mount’s full court pressure defense. Lind specializes in skill development with the programs guards, while assisting in scouting, academics, and community service.
One of the biggest assets that Lind brought with him to Emmitsburg is his background with basketball analytics. Lind developed and implemented a state of the art program to analyze every possession on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball to help the Mountaineers maximize each player’s impact.
During his first two years at the Mount, Lind coordinated the team’s offense. In 2013-14, the Mountaineer offense led the NEC in scoring offense, free throw percentage, three-pointers made and tempo. The team was in the top 100 nationally in offensive efficiency, effective field goal percentage, scoring offense, three-pointers attempted, three-pointers made per game, and free throw percentage.
The Mountaineers have finished in the top four in the NEC both of Lind’s years, while advancing to the 2014 NCAA Tournament. Off the court, the men’s basketball team has won The Mount Cup both year’s in Lind’s tenure. The Mount Cup is awarded to the team who exhibits the most community service, school spirit, success in the classroom and athletic achievement.
Prior to the Mount, Lind served as the Video Coordinator at Virginia Commonwealth University where he mentored under then head coach Shaka Smart. While his major assignment was the daily collection and analysis of all of the program’s film and the implementation of advanced analytics, Lind also assisted with post player development, recruiting organization and community service efforts.
At VCU, Lind began his coaching career as a Graduate Manager, where he served as the primary assistant to the Video Coordinator. During this season, he was a part of VCU’s historic run to the 2011 Final Four. In his three years at VCU, the Rams won 84 games, won a CAA Championship and appeared in three NCAA Tournaments where they won seven games. Lind also guided the Rams to an Athletic Department Community Service Award for their work in the community during the 2011-2012 school year. He graduated from VCU with a M.Ed. in Sports Leadership in 2011.
Lind, a New Knoxville, Ohio native, graduated with a B.S. in Economics from Loyola (Md.) in 2010 where he served as a Student Manager and Video Coordinator for then Head Coach Jimmy Patsos for three seasons.
Lind currently resides in Emmitsburg with his wife, Ciara, and their four year old daughter, Magnolia.
Miller is in her second season as the Mount's Coordinator of Basketball Operations. A 2013 graduate of the Mount, Miller served as a team manager from 2010-13.
A graduate assistant at the Richard J. Bolte, Sr. School of Business at the Mount last year, Miller was the Mount's head manager her final two seasons with the program. Her duties included overseeing all of the team's managers, setting up and cleaning up after practice, packing for away games and organizing and ordering food for postgame meals.
Miller served as the head coach of the seventh and eighth grade girls basketball team at Biglerville Junior High last year. She was also an assistant track and field coach for Biglerville High School's varsity team in 2013-14.
A graduate of the Mount's Sport Management program, Miller is pursuing a master's degree in business administration at the Mount.
"Justine has been a huge part of our program for more than three seasons now," said Christian. "Her work as a student manager separated her from the rest, and her passion for helping us build the Mount into an elite program has never waived. She is as exceptional of a person that I have had the opportunity to work with over my ten plus years of coaching. I am thrilled to have her join the staff."