Interview with Xavier University Men’s Head Basketball Coach Alfred Williams



Honors
• 2019-20 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Coach of the Year
• HoopDirt.com NAIA Coach of the Week (Jan. 27-Feb. 2, 2020)

Briefly
• 2020-21 is his fifth season as XULA head coach
• This is his 11th season on the XULA men’s basketball coaching staff — he was an assistant to Dannton Jackson for six seasons (2009-15)
• XULA announced the hiring of Williams on June 28, 2016 — he succeeded Dannton Jackson, the all-time winningest Gold Rush coach — and Williams was introduced to media, fans and the XULA community at a news conference one week later (July 5, 2016)
• Begins 2020-21 with a 4-year XULA record of 79-49 (.617)
• Career record as a head coach at four-year colleges entering 2020-21 is 93-66 (.585) in five seasons
• 2008 graduate of XULA, bachelor of science degree
• Native of Greenville, S.C., and a 2002 graduate of that city’s Southside High School

At XULA (Head Coach)
• Two GCAC regular-season championships: 2017-18, 2019-20
• One GCAC Tournament championship: 2019-20 — the Gold Rush’s first GCAC Tournament championship since the 1995-96 season
• Qualified twice for NAIA National Championship tournaments: 2017-18, 2019-20
• No. 10 in the final NAIA Division I top 25 coaches poll of 2019-20
• 13 victories against top-25 opponents, seven in 2019-20
• Six NAIA All-America citations, including William Loyd on the second team in 2019-20
• GCAC individual player major awards: Freshman of the Year for Rayshawn Mart (2017-18) and TJ Jones (2019-20, shared) and Defensive Player of the Year for Joseph Williams (2017-18)
• Four selections to Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars
• 39 qualifiers in first four seasons — 16 in 2019 — for the Sister Grace Mary Flickinger Honor Roll
• Two of his first four teams were top-10 in NAIA Division I scoring defense . . . No. 7 in 2017-18 with 67.8 points allowed per game and No. 10 in 2019-20 with 67.6

At XULA (Student-Athlete)
• A 6-foot-4 forward who averaged 8.4 points, 5.8 rebounds in 97 games over three seasons (2004-05, 2006-07 and 2007-08)
• All-GCAC as a senior in 2007-08 when he averaged 11.4 points and seven rebounds a game and made 45.6 percent of his 3-pointers (52-of-114)
• Single-game highs included 23 points, 15 rebounds, six assists, three steals and four made 3-pointers
• His basket with seven seconds remaining broka a tie at 79 in unseeded XULA’s 82-79 victory against third-seeded Georgetown (Ky.) in the opening round of NAIA nationals at Kansas City, Mo., on March 15, 2007
• Helped XULA earn a share of the GCAC regular-season championship his junior season (2006-07) and rank as high as eighth in the coaches poll his senior year (2007-08)
• All three XULA teams he was on qualified for NAIA National Championship tournaments
• Transfer from North Carolina Wesleyan College, an NCAA Division III member in Rocky Mount, N.C.

Prior to XULA
• Head coach of men’s basketball at Harris-Stowe State University (St. Louis) in 2015-16 season . . . Led the Hornets in a 7 1/2-game improvement from the previous year and victories against a pair of NCAA Division II opponents . . . Harris-Stowe lost 84-83 in double-overtime Jan. 28, 2016, at American Midwest Conference champion Columbia (Mo.), a 29-game winner, after losing there by 46 points the previous season

Alfred Williams Milestone Victories as a Head Coach
At XULA
No. 1 — XULA 66, Carver 44 (Oct. 25, 2016, at Convocation Center)
No. 50 — XULA 65, SUNO 51 (Feb. 20, 2019, at Convocation Center)

At 4-Year Colleges
No. 1 — Harris-Stowe 73, IU Southeast 51 (Oct. 24, 2015, at St. Louis)
No. 50 — XULA 78, Virgin Islands 74 (Oct. 28, 2018, at St. Thomas, Virgin Islands)

More Alfred Williams Milestones as a Head Coach
• Feb. 18, 2019: XULA made school-record 16 3-pointers vs. Rust in a 94-68 victory at Convocation Center
• Nov. 23, 2019: XULA made a school-record 75 percent of its 3-pointers (9 of 12) in an 80-65 victory at Huston-Tillotson (Austin, Texas)
• Feb. 29, 2020: XULA, on the road against Dillard, broke the school season record for made 3-pointers, then finished the season with 254 . . . Previous high was 222 in 2007-08

What They’re Saying About Alfred Williams
Grady Brewer, Morehouse College Head Coach
“Xavier University has picked an extremely talented young basketball coach in Alfred Williams. He has paid his dues and he has an incredible love for his alma mater. It’s a win-win situation for all parties involved.”

Larry Cordaro, Louisiana State University at Alexandria Head Coach
“Alfred Williams is an outstanding young coach who is a great fit for Xavier. He has the coaching characteristics to keep the Gold Rush competing at a high level. AJ has an eye for talent and really cares about people. All he needed was head coaching experience which he went out and got. I’m really happy for AJ and look forward to seeing him back in Louisiana.”

Mike Davis, University of Detroit Mercy Head Coach
“Alfred Williams is a really good basketball coach and has a bright future.”

Michael Huger, Bowling Green State University Head Coach
“Alfred Williams is one of the best young coaches in our business. He has a great basketball mind. AJ is also a people person which he will use to do a great job with his student-athletes. I wish him all the best.”

Casey Long, Murray State University Assistant Coach
“Alfred Williams is an unbelievable coach and God-fearing person. He really cares about developing players to be the best student-athletes they can be. He is truly appreciative of any opportunity, and he will be a great coach at Xavier.”

Alfred Williams XULA Season Notes
• Most Victories: 27 in 2019-20
• Fewest Victories: 10 in 2016-17
• Fewest Losses: 6 in 2019-20
• Most Losses: 20 in 2016-17
• Highest Winning Percentage: .818 (27-6) in 2019-20
• Lowest Winning Percentage: 333 (10-20) in 2016-17
• Winning Seasons: 3
• .500 Seasons: 0
• Losing Seasons: 1
• Seasons With 20-or-More Victories: 2
• Longest Winning Streaks:
9 from Dec. 17, 2019-Feb. 3, 2020
8 from Dec. 13, 2017-Jan. 15, 2018
6 from Nov. 16-26, 2019
5 from Feb. 29-March 8, 2020 (active entering 2020-21 season)
5 from Feb. 19-March 3, 2018
5 from Jan. 24-Feb. 12, 2018
• Longest Losing Streaks:
6 from Dec. 16-Jan. 3, 2017
5 from Nov, 10-26, 2018
4 from Nov. 4-15, 2016

Alfred Williams Year-by-Year as a Head Coach
——All Games—— ——League Games——
Season School W L Pct. W L Pct. Rank League Tournament NAIA Tournament Final Poll
2015-16 Harris-Stowe 14 17 .452 10 12 .455 tie-7th 0-1, Quarterfinals — —
2016-17 XULA 10 20 .333 6 6 .500 4th 0-1, Quarterfinals — —
2017-18 XULA 24 9 .727 9 3 .750 tie-1st 2-1, 2nd Place 0-1, 1st Round 25th
2018-19 XULA 18 14 .563 8 6 .571 tie-4th 1-1, Semifinals — —
2019-20 XULA 27 6 .818 12 2 .857 1st 3-0, Champion 0-0, Qualified 10th
Totals 5 Seasons 93 66 .585 45 29 .608 2 titles 6-4, 1 title 2 trips, 0-1 record final top 25: twice
XULA Totals 4 Seasons 79 49 .617 35 17 .673 2 titles 6-3, 1 title 2 trips, 0-1 record final top 25: twice
oach at Xavier.”

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