Chattanooga hires Will Wade as new head coach

Jamie Squire

The Mocs called on the VCU Rams assistant coach to try and lead the program to their first NCAA Tournament since 2009.

The Chattanooga Mocs hired VCU Rams assistant Will Wade as their new head coach, ESPN reported on Monday.

The Mocs last made the NCAA Tournament in 2009 when they won the Southern Conference Tournament, but haven't been back since. Chattanooga hopes a little bit of Shaka Smart's success has rubbed off on Wade, who has been with VCU since 2009.

Wade graduated from Clemson in 2005, working with the basketball program throughout his time at school, eventually leaving in 2007. He then became Harvard's recruiting coordinator. At Harvard, he helped land the first top-25 recruiting class in 2008 and finished at .500 for the first time since 2002.

Wade replaces coach John Shulman, who was fired last month, and will become one of the youngest head coaches in the nation.

"I think it's an advantage," Wade told said. "I think I've got a lot of energy, a lot of enthusiasm. I think it helps in terms of being able to relate to the players and having the ability to relate to them and spend time with them and develop really good relationships with them."

Chattanooga athletic director David Blackburn cited Wade's success with VCU, where he worked specifically with the Rams defense that was known for a constant press that resulted in steals. The Rams set a school record 422 steals as a team this past season.

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