Troy’s Kenneth Mangrum making plays

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Wesley Kirchharr

Staff Writer

Troy men’s basketball’s Kenneth Mangrum was named as a “Top Men’s Basketball Assistant,” according to Stadium.com on Tuesday. 

“It is a very deserving honor for Coach Mangrum,” Head Coach Scott Cross said. “He works very hard. 

“He was on my staff for five years at UT Arlington and is going on his second year here with me at Troy. He is a guy that I trust 100% with everything that I do.” 

Mangrum, Troy basketball’s assistant coach, found himself at fourth on the list. Mangrum also coached a stint with the UT Arlington Mavs from 2014 to 2018 before coming to Troy to join the Trojans. 

Stadium’s website explains that it is a multi-platform sports network specializing in live and on-demand games. 

During this period of limited sports action, the programming organization has accepted the task of ranking the top men’s basketball assistants among various conferences. In an article posted on the site on Aug. 11, author Jeff Goodman explained how he polled at least 20 assistants in the Sun Belt, asking them to name top assistant coaches in their league. 

Along with ranking Sun Belt assistants, Stadium also provides rankings within every Division I conference – a list of more than 30 conferences. 

It is not uncommon for rising assistant coaches to find their way into a head coaching spot in the men’s basketball world, so a detailed ranking such as this will serve fans well as many await the return of the sport.

Eight coaches were ranked in the Sun Belt category, with four being tied for the fifth-place slot. According to the listing, UT Arlington’s Greg Young takes the title as the most respected within the Sun Belt. Young has been with the program since 2009, leading the Mavericks to several successful seasons while under Cross. 

Charles Baker from Little Rock and Amorrow Morgan from South Alabama landed the second and third places, respectively. 

The Stadium ranking listed a short biography of each coach and a word from the head coach of their teams. 

“He is a great role model for our players,” Cross said. “In addition, he is a ‘we guy’ and never lets his ego get in the way when making suggestions on who to recruit or what we should do on offense, defense or playing time. 

“He really understands and studies the game and is willing to hold our players accountable while still maintaining very good relationships. We are very, very fortunate to have him on staff here at Troy.”

The ranking also gave a response from an anonymous Sun Belt assistant that participated in the voting who said that Mangrum was “one of the best coaches and people in this business.”

Cross believes that “this guy deserves to be a head coach in the very near future.”  

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