The Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA, www.fca.org) recently presented its annual John Lotz “Barnabas” Award to Longwood University’s Jayson Gee for his leadership, dedication and commitment both on and off the court.
Longwood University Head Basketball Coach Jayson Gee
Gee, a 25-year coaching veteran, received the award Saturday, April 4, during the FCA Coaches Luncheon at the National Association of Basketball Coaches convention at the Indianapolis Convention Center in Indianapolis, Ind.
The award is presented annually to honor a basketball coach who best exhibits a commitment to Christ, integrity and encouragement to others, and lives a balanced life. Gee is the 13th winner of the “Barnabas” Award, named for former North Carolina assistant and Florida head coach John Lotz.
“Jayson Gee exemplifies the ideals of the John Lotz Award—commitment, integrity and encouragement,” said Les Steckel, FCA President and CEO. “For a quarter century in basketball, we have loved watching Jayson lead both on and off the court and truly impact the lives of his players.”
According to his official biography, Gee is in his second year at Longwood University, following his appointment on April 3, 2013. He is the former associate head coach at Cleveland State University (CSU) and the eighth head coach in the 38-year history of the Longwood program. A coaching veteran with 25 years of experience at the collegiate level, Gee led Longwood to an overall record of 8-24 during 2013-14, including 3-13 in the Big South Conference, while finishing sixth in the North Division.
While at CSU, Gee helped lead the program to an overall record of 136-100, including four 20-win seasons and four post-season appearances. The Vikings won the 2009 Horizon League Tournament Championship and received an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, where they upset Wake Forest in the first round.
Gee recruited and coached Norris Cole, the 2011 Horizon League MVP and Defensive Player of the Year, who was a first-round NBA draft selection and is a current member of the New Orleans Pelicans. He was significantly involved in program development at CSU with an emphasis on recruiting and post players, scheduling, skill development, media relations, scouting, academic monitoring and community relations.
Gee spent three years at St. Bonaventure University (2003-06), including two seasons as associate head coach. Prior to that, he was the head coach and assistant AD at the University of Charleston (W.Va.), where he led the Division II program to a seven-year record of 160-55.
From 1995-96, Gee was an associate head coach at Ohio University, after spending two years as an assistant head coach there. While there, he helped develop Gary Trent, a first-round NBA draft pick of the Milwaukee Bucks, who played a combined nine seasons in Portland, Toronto, Dallas and Minnesota.
Gee began his collegiate coaching career at Youngstown State University in Ohio, where he spent four years with the Penguins after becoming one of the youngest Division I assistant coaches in the country, at age 23.
He was named the 10th-best assistant coach in Division I by Daniel O’Brien’s Bleacher Report and was rated by CollegeInsider.com as the No. 5 mid-major assistant coach in the country following the 2009-09 campaign.
Gee was one of 18 selected for the 2008 ACE (Achieving Coaching Excellence) Program in Indianapolis. Sponsored by the NCAA Black Coaches and Administrators Council, the ACE Program prepares minority collegiate coaches for success as future head coaches.
The Springfield, Ohio, native played four years at Charleston, helping the program to a record of 92-30, including 30-5 during his sophomore season. A two-year team captain, Gee finished his collegiate career at UC third in both rebounds (844) and games played (122). He was inducted into the Charleston Athletics Hall of Fame in 2008.
Gee earned his bachelor of science degree in social science education from Charleston in 1988, and his master’s of science degree in sport science and administration from Ohio University in 2003.
Since its launch by FCA in 2003, the “Barnabas” Award has honored an impressive and impactful lineup of coaches. Past winners and their respective schools at the time of the award are:
2003: Homer Drew, Valparaiso
2004: John Wooden, UCLA
2005: Dale Clayton, Carson-Newman
2006: Steve Alford, Iowa
2007: Dale Layer, Colorado State
2008: Willis Wilson, Rice
2009: Ritchie McKay, Virginia
2010: Gary Waters, Cleveland State
2011: Billy Kennedy, Texas A&M
2012: Don Meyer, Northern State
2013; Tom Crean, Indiana
2014: Bob Hoffman, Mercer
For more information about the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, visit FCA’s web site at www.fca.org, its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/fcafans or its Twitter feed @fcanews.