Tennessee Volunteers coach Rob Lanier talks with Derrick Walker during the first half of the game against Kansas Jayhawks at the NIT Season Tip-Off Tournament at Barclays Center on November 23, 2018 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
Photo: Sarah Stier/Getty Images
Photo: Sarah Stier/Getty Images

Georgia State hires Rob Lanier as men’s basketball coach

Rob Lanier has been named Georgia State men’s basketball coach, the school announced on Friday. Lanier most recently served as associate head coach at Tennessee, a position he held the past four years. 

Lanier, 50, was also an associate head coach at Texas, an assistant coach at Florida, Virginia, Rutgers and his alma mater St. Bonaventure and head coach at Siena in a career where he has been on the staff of 11 teams that played in the NCAA tournament.

“In Rob Lanier, we’ve hired a basketball coach who I believe will take Georgia State basketball to the next level,” President Mark Becker said in a statement. “He has vast experience coaching in some of the nation’s premier college basketball programs, and he has a deep commitment to developing players as students and athletes. Coach Lanier’s demonstrated record of recruiting top talent, including numerous all-Americans, also bodes well for the future of Panther basketball. I welcome him to Atlanta and the Georgia State family.”

Ron Hunter left Georgia State last month for Tulane after a eight-year tenure at the school.

Tennessee finished the 2018-19 season with a 31-6 record and a Sweet 16 spot in the NCAA tournament.

“I would like to thank Georgia State President Mark Becker along with Director of Athletics Charlie Cobbs for this incredible opportunity,” Lanier said in a statement. “This is a time of great transformation at Georgia State and I look forward to continuing to build on the reputation that our men’s basketball program has established nationally. I am excited to begin building relationships with the young men in this program.”

A native of Buffalo, N.Y., Lanier graduated from St. Bonaventure in 1990 with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. A four-year letterman with the Bonnies who scored 868 career points, he was a three-year starter and team captain during his senior season. Lanier earned Atlantic 10 Conference All-Freshman Team honors in 1986-87 and was named the team’s Most Improved Player in 1988-89. A two-time scholar-athlete nominee, he went on to earn a master’s degree in educational counseling from Niagara in 1993. He is the cousin of Bob Lanier, enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame after a 14-year NBA career.
Lanier and his wife, Dr. Dayo Lanier, have a son, Emory, and a daughter, Kai.

“We believe that under his leadership, our program will continue to rise as one of the premier programs in the country. He understands the core values we have at Georgia State and will help our student-athletes succeed both on the court and in the classroom.”

Georgia State will hold a press conference and reception on Tuesday at 11 a.m., in the University Club of Georgia State Stadium. The event will be open to the public.

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