PERKINSTON — Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College has hired Kyle Cooper to be its new assistant men's basketball coach under head coach Wendell Weathers.
"I'm excited to be joining the Gulf Coast family," he said. "I would like to thank Coach Weathers and Athletic Director Steven Campbell for this great opportunity. Gulf Coast has a rich tradition of competing for championships on a yearly basis and I'm eager to be a part of it."
Cooper arrives off an impressive one-year stint as head coach at Little Priest Tribal College in Nebraska. The Warriors won 14 games in 2017-18 after the program had managed only three wins in its first three seasons.
A turnaround of that magnitude requires all the attributes a head coach is looking for in an assistant. And Cooper's year as a head coach provided him with knowledge about exactly what's needed from an assistant.
"We think he brings relentless recruitment," Weathers said. "He's got seven years on the college level, including one year as head coach, under his belt. He's got lots of contacts in the Midwest and on the East Coast. We expect him to bring experience coaching and recruiting along with just a ton of hard work."
Cooper's players won the school's first three conference player of the week awards and had a national player of the week after upsetting the undefeated No. 1 team in the country, which was the defending national champion in NJCAA Division II. Seven of his 12 players earned Academic All-Region honors, and one was recruited to go to a mid-major NCAA Division I school.
Cooper was associate head men's basketball coach from 2011-2017 at North Iowa Area Community College, where the Trojans had five straight winning seasons for the first time in 25 years. He recruited and coached the school's first-ever two-time All-American, 17 all-region players and 15 that went on to play NCAA Division I or II. Six of his players eventually played professionally overseas.
Cooper also played at NIACC, where he was a first-team All-Region player. He ranked second in school history with seven 3-pointers in a game and fourth with 81 3-pointers in a season.
After getting his associate's degree at North Iowa, he graduated from Waldorf University with a bachelor's in organizational leadership and a master's in the same field with an emphasis in sports management.
Cooper is married to his wife Nicole.
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