Men's basketball vs UNC

Fans create an orange and white human checkerboard during the game against North Carolina at Thompson-Boling Arena on Dec. 17, 2017.

After a strong season for the Tennessee men's basketball team, one of Rick Barnes' assistants is getting another shot at running his own program.

Vols associate head coach Rob Lanier has been hired by Georgia State as its new men's basketball coach, according to a school release.

“I would like to thank Georgia State President Mark Becker along with Director of Athletics Charlie Cobb for this incredible opportunity,” Lanier said in the release. “This is a time of great transformation at Georgia State and I look forward to continuing to build on the reputation that our men’s basketball program has established nationally. 

“I am excited to begin building relationships with the young men in this program.”

Lanier served on Barnes' staff since April 2015. Prior to his time with the Vols, he worked as an assistant at multiple schools, including Texas, Florida and Virginia.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome Rob and his family to the Panther Family,” Georgia State Director of Athletics Charlie Cobb said in the release. “We believe that under his leadership, our program will continue to rise as one of the premier programs in the country. 

“He understands the core values we have at Georgia State and will help our student-athletes succeed both on the court and in the classroom.”

Lanier has been a head coach in the past, leading Siena College from 2001 to 2005.

“In Rob Lanier, we’ve hired a basketball coach who I believe will take Georgia State basketball to the next level,” Georgia State President Mark Becker said in the release. “He has vast experience coaching in some of the nation’s premier college basketball programs, and he has a deep commitment to developing players as students and athletes.” 

The Vols notched a 31-6 overall record this past season, spending multiple weeks at the No. 1 spot in the country and making it to the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament before being ousted by Purdue. 

“Coach Lanier’s demonstrated record of recruiting top talent, including numerous all-Americans, also bodes well for the future of Panther basketball,” Becker said. “I welcome him to Atlanta and the Georgia State family.”

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