Stansbury adds veteran assistant coaches
By Zach Greenwell

Posted on July 12, 2017 11:15 PM

WKU men’s basketball head coach Rick Stansbury announced Wednesday the hiring of Marc Hsu and Nikita Johnson as assistant coaches.

“We’re excited to have Marc and Nikita join our program,” Stansbury said. “I’ve known Nikita for a long time, back from his days in junior college and his years at LSU. He’s an extremely hard worker, but most importantly, he’s a quality person. I’ve known Marc for several years, and he’s worked for individuals that I have the utmost respect for. I do know from my dealings with him that he’s a tireless worker.”

Hsu joins the Hilltopper staff after serving as an assistant at New Mexico.

Before joining the Lobos, Hsu spent the 2016-17 season at New Mexico State, where he helped the Aggies to a 28-6 record, a 20-game winning streak and the WAC Tournament Championship. Hsu was previously a volunteer director of basketball operations for New Mexico State in the 2004-05 season.

“I’m extremely grateful for this opportunity to work with Coach Stansbury,” Hsu said. “Coach has had a ton of success both as a coach and a recruiter, and I’m looking forward to learning under his tutelage. I’m familiar with WKU and its great tradition and history from my time at New Mexico State and competing in the Sun Belt. It’s an unbelievable place, and I look forward to helping continue its success.”

Hsu spent three seasons (2013-16) at CSU Bakersfield and helped earn the program’s first-ever NCAA Tournament berth since transitioning to Division I.

Before his time at CSUB, he served as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Texas Southern (2010-12), where he helped the Tigers win the regular-season title and an NIT berth in 2011. Hsu also coached a pair of All-Southwestern Athletic Conference players in Omar Strong and Fred Sturdivant.

Hsu spent the 2008-10 seasons at Binghamton, and in his second season with the Bearcats, guided Dylan Talley to American East Freshman of the Year honors, while Greer Wright earned First-Team All-AEC accolades.

In his first season with Binghamton, the Bearcats captured the American East regular-season and tournament titles, their first-ever conference championship and NCAA Tournament berth. The Bearcats finished the season ranked No. 22 in the finale Mid-Major Poll.

Hsu spent a season at Oregon State (2007-08) as the director of basketball operations following the 2007 summer as an assistant coach at Chipola College. In 2006-07, Hsu was the head men's basketball coach at Laurinburg Prep. In that span, he coached eight players that went on to play at the Division I level and five that moved on to play professionally.

His assistant coaching career began at Barton County Community College in 2005-06, where he helped coach four players that moved on to the Division I level. He was also the volunteer assistant men's basketball coach at Cabrini College in 2003-04.

Hsu received his degree in business administration with a minor in sports science from Cabrini College. 

Johnson, who spent the last four seasons at Stetson, brings more than 30 years of coaching experience to the Hilltopper staff.

The highlights of his career include coaching or recruiting more than 50 players who went on to play professionally, including NBA players Glen Davis, Tyrus Thomas, Brandon Bass, Mike James, Anthony Randolph and Elfrid Payton.

“I’m very excited about this opportunity,” Johnson said. “Coach Stansbury is someone I’ve known for almost 30 years. I have great respect for him, and he’s someone I consider to be one of the top coaches in the country. He’s great in the community, with the university and on the court with the kids. He’s a relentless worker and someone I actually dreamed about having the opportunity to work with.

“It’s a university I’m very familiar with because of my time at the University of New Orleans and Louisiana-Lafayette. We’ve been in many battles in the past. This program has great history and tradition, and I’m very happy to be here and bring what I can to the future success.”

Before arriving at Stetson, Johnson spent two seasons on the bench at Louisiana-Lafayette, helping the Ragin’ Cajuns post their first winning season in seven years in the 2011-12 campaign.

He was the associate head coach at Louisiana Tech from 2007-10, as the Bulldogs made an appearance in the College Insider Tournament in 2010 after recording 24 wins, the program’s most in 25 years.

Johnson served three seasons on John Brady’s staff at LSU from 2004-07, during which the Tigers made a run to the Final Four in 2006, captured the SEC West Division title in 2005 and went a combined 64-34 over this three seasons.

From 1993 to 2004, Johnson spent time on the staffs of Murray State, Duquesne, Tennessee State and New Orleans. He got his staff in college coaching in 1981 at Chipola College, where he was part of six conference titles. 

After two seasons at his alma mater West Georgia and two more at Odessa College, Johnson moved to the Division I ranks at Murray State. The Racers won two Ohio Valley Conference titles, made one NIT appearance and one NCAA Tournament appearance during his time in Murray.

A native of Greenwood, Fla., Johnson earned region, all-county, and all-district honors at Marianna High School. He helped his team go 76-10 in three seasons, including two runner-up finishes in the state playoffs in 1977 and 1978.

Johnson earned his Associate of Arts degree at Chipola College in 1981, and his Bachelor of Arts at West Georgia in 1989. He is married to the former Tonya Ramey of Pittsburgh.


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