MOBILE, Al. — Richie Riley strikes again for the South Alabama Jaguars.
To begin the off-season, the Jaguars hired Riley after he led the Nicholls Colonels to a record of 21-11 overall, and 15-3 in Southland Conference play. The Colonels earned a share of the regular season conference title with the Southeastern Louisiana Golden Lions.
Now, as the head coach of the Jaguars, Riley is making his mark on the transfer market as he looks to turn South Alabama into a top contender in the Sun Belt Conference. The Jaguars have already landed graduate transfer Kory Holden, who will give the team a big offensive boost.
On Monday, they landed another talented guard who will help the team in 2019-20.
Richie Riley and the Jaguars landed a commitment from guard Don Coleman, who transferred from the California Golden Bears after two seasons.
Coleman took to his Twitter account to announce his decision, mentioning Coach Riley in the announcement.
Coleman, a native of nearby Augusta, GA, returns to his home state after two seasons with the Golden Bears on the West Coast. He was a two-time Augusta Chronicle First-Team All Area selection as a junior and senior, and he scored over 2,000 points over his high school career.
After one season at Lawson State C.C., Coleman transferred to the Golden Bears and became a key piece to the rotation from day one. In 2016-17, Coleman averaged 4.6 points and 1.5 rebounds in just over 11 minutes per game.
Fast forward to the 2017-18 season, and Coleman took on a starring role for the program. He averaged a team-high 14.2 points to go along with 2.9 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game, while appearing in 30 games and averaging over 31 minutes of court time per outing.
To kick off the season, Coleman put up massive numbers on the scoreboard. He had three 30+ point performances over his first four games, including back-to-back such performances in the Golden Bears’ first two games. Coleman posted 31 points in the season opener against the UC Riverside Highlanders, and then followed that up with a 30-point performance against the Cal Poly Mustangs in the next game.
In Coleman, the Jaguars get a guard who knows how to score, and brings a wealth of experience with him back to his home state. When he becomes eligible, Coleman will be a threat for the Sun Belt Player of the Year award.
Coleman will sit out the 2018-19 season due to the NCAA’s transfer regulations, and will be eligible come the 2019-20 campaign.
– T. Bennett