Kevin Willard to hire Tony Skinn for new Terps coaching staff

New Maryland basketball coach Kevin Willard is expected to hire Tony Skinn to be an assistant coach on his new staff, sources told InsideMDSports. Skinn, who spent this season as an assistant at Ohio State, is a Takoma Park native who previously spent three seasons on Willard’s staff at Seton Hall.

A former standout George Mason guard who helped the Patriots on their stunning run to the 2006 Final Four, Skinn is known as a rising young assistant with a knack for recruiting, player development and relationship-building.

“Tony comes highly recommended from every level – NBA, college, AAU and high school,” Buckeyes coach Chris Holtmann said last year after hiring him. “Tony was an outstanding player on a Final Four team, and as a professional,” “He has developed a reputation in his coaching career as being a tremendous worker, he’s detailed oriented, builds excellent relationships with players and is an outstanding recruiter. He has strong ties in the DC Metro area and has worked with some highly successful high school, AAU and college programs.”

Before joining Willard at Seton Hall, Skinn worked at Louisiana Tech, helping the Bulldogs win 63 games in three seasons. Having gotten his coaching start with local AAU powerhouse Team Takeover, he’s well-connected in local grassroots and high school basketball circles and could be Willard’s lead recruiter locally. But he’s not strictly a recruiter.

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“He scouts every team’s personnel,” Holtmann said in a recent interview.

Skinn, who was born in Nigeria, also has international basketball connections. That’s how Seton Hall landed Ikey Obiagu, a one-time Maryland recruiting target whose uncle was Skinn’s teammate on the Nigerian national team. Obiagu broke long-time NBA player Samuel Dalembert’s school blocked shots record this season.

He also used his “Nigerian connection” to get Anthony Duruji to Lousiana Tech and brought Frenchmen Alexis Yetna to France.

With the addition of Skinn, to bench coaching jobs remain open, although Willard might be close to filling both.

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