George Mason names Kim English as men’s basketball head coach

Nov 25, 2019; Knoxville, TN, USA; Tennessee Volunteers assistant coach Kim English during the first half against the Chattanooga Mocs at Thompson-Boling Arena. Mandatory Credit: Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

George Mason named Kim English as the 11th head coach in Patriots history Tuesday.

He spent the past two seasons as an assistant at Tennessee under Rick Barnes, who also got his first head coaching job at George Mason in 1987-88.

English, 32, replaces Dave Paulsen, who was fired on March 16 after compiling a 95-91 record in six seasons with zero NCAA Tournament appearances.

“Kim English is a rising star in the college basketball world,” athletic director Brad Edwards said in a news release. “He is a tremendous communicator, tireless worker and a natural leader. He develops a unique rapport with his players, which fuels their development and enriches their overall experience as student-athletes.”

English inherits a program that hasn’t been to the NCAA tourney since 2011. The Patriots finished 13-9 in 2020-21, including an 8-6 record in the Atlantic 10.

“I am so incredibly grateful and honored to accept the position of head coach at George Mason University,” English said.

English was an All-Big 12 guard at Missouri and a second-round pick by the Detroit Pistons in the 2012 NBA Draft. He played in 41 games for the Pistons in 2012-13, averaging 2.9 points and 9.9 minutes.

English played professionally overseas for a few years before beginning his coaching career as an assistant at Tulsa (2015-17) and Colorado (2017-19).

This season, he helped the Volunteers (18-9, 10-7 SEC) climb as high as No. 6 in the rankings and earn a No. 5 seed in the NCAA Tournament, where they lost to Oregon State in the first round.

“Kim English is a grand slam hire for George Mason,” Barnes said. “He’s the total package. From the day he joined our staff at Tennessee, he made an immediate impact on our program. He has a unique gift for connecting with people and forming genuine relationships. I’m particularly proud that he gets the opportunity to begin his head coaching career at the special place that also gave me my first big opportunity. I know he’ll lead the Patriots to great success.”

–Field Level Media