Anthony Grant, the new University of Dayton men’s basketball coach, has returned to his alma mater.
Grant’s college basketball career with the Flyers, from 1983 to 1987, is documented in black and white photographs in the Dayton Daily News archives.
The images capture a fledgling player with a shy smile posing for an official team portrait and as a skilled player wearing a No. 33 jersey on the court.
As a student, Grant contributed to the Flyers’ success, now he’s back to make his mark as the head coach.
Here are nine things to know about Grant’s career:
From player to coach. Grant is the 20th coach in UD men’s basketball history and the seventh in the last 70 years. He’s the second former Dayton basketball player in the modern era to be hired as head coach and the first since Don Donoher, his former coach.
An early start. Grant was Dade County player of the year at Miami High School in Florida under coach Marco “Shakey” Rodriguez, who later hired him as an assistant coach.
Big man on campus. Grant was a starter at UD for three years and was a four-year basketball letter winner.
College stats. The new head coach played in 105 games for UD from 1983-87. He averaged 11.6 points and 6.7 rebounds per game. Grant didn’t play much as a freshman when Dayton reached the Elite Eight but was a starter the next three seasons. He ranks 61st in school history with 902 points.
A team leader. During his Flyer career, Grant became captain and team MVP as a senior and was part of two NCAA Tournament teams, including the Elite Eight squad of 1984, as well as an NIT team.
Early career path. After graduating from UD, Grant played in the now-defunct United States Basketball League. He later took a job coaching junior varsity basketball and teaching driver’s education in his hometown of Miami, Fla.
On a national stage. Before landing his new job, Grant was an assistant coach for the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder under coach Billy Donovan.
Basketball greats. While with the Oklahoma City Thunder, the new UD coach worked with Kevin Durant, now with the Golden State Warriors, and Russell Westbrook, who this season became the second player ever to average a triple-double in a season.
A mature decision. Grant, 50, is older than his three predecessors were when they were hired, leading to speculation that Dayton might not be a stepping stone. Oliver Purnell was 40 when he was hired in 1994, Brian Gregory was 36 in 2003 and Archie Miller was 32 in 2011.
ABOUT THIS FEATURE
HISTORY EXTRA is a weekly pictorial history feature showcasing the Miami Valley’s rich heritage. If you have a unique set of historic photos found in your parents’ or grandparents’ attic that depicts the past in the Miami Valley, contact Lisa Powell at 937-225-2229 or at Lisa.Powell@coxinc.com.