Jarvis Smith named interim men’s basketball coach
By Kelley M. Arnold
Director of News & Public Information
MOUNT VERNON—Only a week into his new role at Brewton-Parker College as interim head men’s basketball coach, BPC alum Jarvis Smith (’04) of Vidalia is focusing on fall recruitment.
Smith held open try-outs at the college April 17, and he’s working with current student-athletes in the evenings to develop a report with the players. Former Barons men’s basketball head coach John D. Jones resigned from the college last month to pursue other opportunities.
“My goal is to keep my guys here first; the ones who are here now and are returning. And then I want to work with those coming in,” said Smith.
Athletic Director Sheila Simmons recruited and anticipates a bright future for the Barons under his leadership.
“I am very excited with the hiring of Coach Smith,” said Athletic Director Coach Sheila Simmons, who recruited him. “He brings with him a wealth of integrity and character, and there is no doubt he will be a great leader for the Men’s Basketball team.”
While at BPC, Coach Smith played for the men’s basketball team during his years at BPC and was a standout student-athlete. Smith was coached by then-head basketball coach Steve Barker. The Barons played for the Georgia-Alabama-Carolina Conference (GACC) and hosted the championship game against Reinhardt in 2004. The Barons lost in overtime by a heart-breaking 2-3 point spread, said Smith.
When asked if he thought he’d ever return to coach at his alma mater, Smith says, “No!” and laughs, “but you never know what God has in store for you. I can’t thank Him enough. At the end of the day I want to be in His will. I feel fortunate. God is good to put me in positions to have success. My wife and I have prayed about this opportunity, and I know that this is our time – in the now – to be a part of the Brewton-Parker College family. I am so excited to be here!”
Coach Smith comes to BPC from a head coaching position at Robert Toombs Christian Academy, where he accumulated an impressive 108-39 overall career record. The RTCA Crusaders won the state championship in 2005-2006 and again in 2009-2010. Coach Smith has won three Coach of the Year awards.
Coach Smith lives in Vidalia with his wife, Shandolyn, and their two children, Jarvis (5) and Shannon (1). He is originally from Decatur and calls Rehoboth Family Christian Church his home church. He is the son of Joe and Vanessa Smith of Jonesboro and Gloria Stephens Hines and Anthony Hines of Austell.
When asked about his memories of college and playing for the Barons, he said he would like to see camaraderie between the sports teams and high game attendance return to the campus.
“It’s so different now,” said Smith, who has attended games off and on over the years since graduation. “I remember the fellowship on campus – the old campus life. We had fun on campus, and we did it together – all the sports interacting. That’s what I want for our teams, our students. Baseball and soccer were probably bigger fans for us (basketball) than we were.”
“One thing about Brewton-Parker is you can’t get lost here,” he added. “Academically, they keep tabs on you better than they would a bigger academic university. That was always a plus for me.”
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