NASHVILLE, Tenn. - - Belmont University men's basketball assistant coach James Strong has accepted a position on the coaching staff at Vanderbilt University, the school announced Monday.
Strong, a standout guard for the Commodores from 1996-2000, returns to his alma mater having serving the past eight seasons at Belmont.
During Strong's time as a member of Rick Byrd's staff, the Bruins amassed a 195-70 record, won 10 conference championships (six regular season, four tournament), made four NCAA Tournament appearances, received national Top 25 poll votes seven out of eight campaigns, earned victories over North Carolina, UCLA, Marquette, Stanford, Georgia, Vanderbilt, Temple and nationally-ranked Murray State, earned the program's first-ever NCAA Tournament victory and NCAA Tournament at-large berth, posted the nation's longest home court win streak and road win streak, and reached the quarterfinal round of the Postseason NIT.
Strong coached three Belmont players who received Associated Press All-America honors (Ian Clark, J.J. Mann, Evan Bradds), as well as Nick Muszynski who garnered Freshman All-America honors in 2019.
The Hunstville, Alabama native coached 14 All-OVC First Team selections, including NBA Champion Clark and 2019 NBA Draft hopeful Dylan Windler.
Strong also oversaw the individual skill development program for redshirt freshmen, of which 11 current Bruins benefited.
Belmont University men's basketball has earned postseason invitations 13 of the last 14 seasons, including eight berths to the NCAA Tournament. The Bruins have won 17 conference championships since 2006 - third-most nationally over that span (Gonzaga, Kansas). Belmont is one of only six NCAA Division I programs outside the Power 5 to post Top 100 RPIs nine consecutive seasons (BYU, Gonzaga, Saint Mary's (CA), San Diego State, Wichita State). Belmont is one of only nine NCAA Division I programs to win 19 or more games 14 consecutive seasons (BYU, Duke, Gonzaga, Kansas, Louisville, Michigan State, North Carolina, San Diego State). Belmont University men's basketball boasts an NCAA-leading 17 CoSIDA Academic All-America selections since 2001 and is one of only three NCAA Division I programs to make the NCAA Academic Progress Rate (APR) Honor Roll every year of existence.