Less than a month after being named Maryland's director of basketball operations, Cliff Warren was promoted Tuesday to an assistant coach position.
Warren, 46, replaces Scott Spinelli, who left last month for a similar position at Boston College.
To fill the basketball operation job, Maryland hired Nima Omidvar, who spent the past three seasons as the video coordinator at North Carolina State.
The addition of Warren gives Mark Turgeon the most experienced assistant he has ever had in his 16-year head coaching career.
Warren, who grew up in Silver Spring and played at Mount St. Mary's, spent the past nine seasons as head coach at Jacksonville University. Despite back-to-back 20-win season in 2008-09 and 2009-2010, Warren was fired after three straight losing seasons.
“Cliff has been an outstanding addition to our staff this offseason,” Turgeon said in a statement. “Soon after working with Cliff, I realized that I already had the best person in place to assume the role of assistant coach. He has made a seamless transition into our program and will continue to be a valuable asset with his strong ties to our region and his head coaching experience at the Division I level. Throughout his career, Cliff has been recognized and well-respected for his knowledge of the game, his recruiting ability and his development of players on and off the court.”
Prior to becoming the head coach at Jacksonville, Warren was an assistant under Paul Hewitt for eight seasons. Three of those years were at Siena, when the Saints went 66-27 and reached to the NCAA tournament in 1998-99. He then coached under Hewitt for five years at Georgia Tech, where the Yellow Jackets were to the NCAA tournament three times, including reaching the national final in 2003-04.
While at Jacksonville, Warren recruited extensively in the Baltimore-Washington area.
Omidvar also has local ties. A 2008 Maryland graduate, he worked as a graduate assistant at Charlotte and an assistant coach at Bowie State before taking the job with N.C. State. The Damascus High grad also coached on the high school and AAU levels at Paul VI in Northern Virginia and D.C.-based Team Takeover.
“We’re happy to welcome Nima back to the University of Maryland,” Turgeon said in a statement. “Nima is a great addition to our staff and it’s always exciting to bring back a member of the Terrapin family. His coaching experience combined with the inroads he has made in our community through his background in grassroots basketball makes him the ideal person for this position.”
twitter.com/sportsprof56Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun