June 18, 2024

Eastern Michigan University’s men’s basketball program has hired Jay Smith as Assistant Coach/Player Development, as announced by Head Coach Stan Heath on Monday, June 10.

Smith, who is beginning his 39th season of collegiate basketball after starting at Kent State University in 1984, was most recently at the University of Michigan as Director of Player Personnel and Development, where he and his staff went 87-72 over the previous five seasons.

“Jay brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our basketball program,” Heath stated. “He has high-level coaching experience and has worked with numerous professionals throughout the years. He’s an amazing coach who will devote a significant amount of time to player development. We’re thrilled to have Jay on board, and he’ll be a tremendous contributor to our success.”

Smith, who is originally from Mio, Michigan, was the Head Coach at Kalamazoo College from 2016 to 2019, Central Michigan University from 1997 to 2006, and Grand Valley State University from 1996 to 1997. Smith also served as an assistant coach at the University of Detroit Mercy from 2008 to 2016, the Wolverines from 1989 to 1996, and the Golden Flashes from 1984 to 1989.

“I want to thank Head Coach Stan Heath and Eastern Michigan University for this opportunity and look forward to working with our student-athletes and staff,” Smith stated. “I’ve had the privilege of knowing Stan for thirty years and I am excited to be on the same team after coaching against him for many years.”


One-on-one with Jay Smith during Michigan Basketball Media Day - YouTube

Smith, who won the Mid-American Conference crowns in 2001 and 2003 at CMU, was also instrumental in recruiting Michigan’s “Fab Five,” and he helped the Wolverines to six NCAA Tournament appearances in his debut season. Smith also helped Detroit Mercy reach the NCAA Tournament in 2012, as well as GVSU win the regular season and tournament championships in 1996-97.

Smith earned a degree in Physical Education and a minor in Business from Saginaw Valley State University in 1984, followed by a Master’s degree in Sport Management from Kent State University in 1986.

The 1979 Michigan Mr. Basketball champion accumulated 2,841 career points at Mio AuSable High School, a record that still holds today.

Smith and his wife, Tymi, have one son, Cooper, and a daughter, Cazzi.

The Jay Smith File
Name: Jay Smith
High School: Mio AuSable High School – Mio, Mich.
College: Saginaw Valley State University – Bachelor’s degree in Physical Education – 1984
Kent State University – Master’s degree in Sport Management – 1986
Family: Wife – Tymi; Son – Cooper, Daughter – Cazzi


Coaching Experience
Year School Position
2024-Present Eastern Michigan University Assistant Coach/Player Development
2019-24 University of Michigan Director of Player Development
2016-19 Kalamazoo College Head Coach
2008-16 University of Detroit Mercy Assistant Coach
1997-2006 Central Michigan University Head Coach
1996-97 Grand Valley State University Head Coach
1989-96 University of Michigan Assistant Coach
1989-96 Kent State University Assistant Coach
1981-83 Saginaw Valley State University Student-Athlete
1979-80 Bowling Green State University Student-Athlete

The Eagles also signed Carlos McMath as Director of Operations on May 28, joining Heath and fourth-year assistants Bob Simon, Drew Denisco, and Shawn Trice.

Season ticket packages, which include tickets to all men’s and women’s basketball home games, are currently on sale. To take part in the action, please visit the EMU Ticket Office online or call 734.487.3669. Don’t pass up your chance to be a part of Eastern Michigan University’s basketball legacy!

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