Virginia Basketball Coach Tony Bennett Promotes Williford, Vandross

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University of Virginia head men’s basketball coach Tony Bennett announced Tuesday (April 17) that he is promoting assistant coach Jason Williford to associate head coach and elevating Orlando Vandross to a full-time assistant coaching position.

Williford, who has been an assistant under Coach Bennett the past nine seasons, takes over the role vacated by Ron Sanchez, who was announced as Charlotte’s head coach shortly after the 2017/2018 season.

“One of the best decisions I made when I first got the job here was to hire Jason Williford,” Bennett said. “His loyalty to our program, his passion for the players and his ability to recruit made this an easy decision.”

Vandross has been Virginia’s director of recruiting/player development the past three seasons. Before coming to Charlottesville, he was an assistant coach at Charlotte from 2011-2015. He previously served as an assistant coach — including three seasons as associate head coach — at Boston University from 1997-2010. With Sanchez moving on to Charlotte, Vandross was performing assistant coaching duties in a temporary capacity the past few weeks before Coach Bennett made his promotion official.

“I am really excited for Orlando and this opportunity,” Bennett added. “Throughout his coaching career, he has built many relationships in the recruiting world that can benefit our program. Orlando’s helped us get involved with a lot of players during his three years at UVA. He’s driven, has strong character and extensive knowledge of the game.”

Vandross’ promotion leaves an open administrative spot on Coach Bennett’s staff, so it’ll be interesting to see who he appoints to fill that role. Meanwhile, Vandross will get a chance to show off his recruiting chops. He joined Coach Bennett on an in-home visit with class of 2019 big man DJ Burns this past Sunday. Also, 247Sports reports that Wake Forest grad-transfer guard Keyshawn Woods will visit Virginia tomorrow. Woods began his collegiate career at Charlotte, spending one year (2014/2015) there before transferring to Wake. Vandross was an assistant at Charlotte in Woods’ first and only season with the 49ers.

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