by Micah Wilkins, Editor
After a month-long nationwide search for a new head coach, the Warren Wilson men’s basketball team decided on 27-year-old Greg Neeley, who left his coaching position at Ancilla College in Donaldson, Ind. for this post. Taking the place of Kevin Walden, who left Warren Wilson to coach at his alma mater Knox College, Neeley will also act as the college’s sports information director.
Neeley and his wife Jessica arrive in Asheville this week, and Neeley has a short month to practice with his team before the season begins Nov. 5, when the Owls play Milligan College.
“The season starts really quickly, there’s not much of a buffer there,” Neeley said. “But I’m excited to start to develop relationships with the student athletes, to get to know the details of Warren Wilson and to get the total Warren Wilson experience.”
Like Warren Wilson, Ancilla College, where Neeley has been coaching men’s basketball for the last two years, is a small, private liberal arts institution, but it is also one of the only private Catholic junior colleges in the country.
“[Warren Wilson] will be new to me because I’ve been at places that are more conservative,” he said. “But it’ll be good for my own personal growth. It’ll be different but I think openness to difference is really great, and that’s something that we’re looking forward to experiencing once we arrive.”
Neeley and his wife are no strangers to the Southeast. Before Ancilla, Neeley was the lead assistant men’s basketball coach at Piedmont College in Demorest, Ga.
“Jessica’s family is from Northeast Georgia,” Neeley said, “so it’ll be good to be closer to them.”
Leaving Indiana, Neeley will not miss the winters, but he will miss the people.
“Anytime you’re involved in a college, the relationships you’ve built are what make it hard to leave a place,” Neeley said. “But at Warren Wilson, we hope to form new relationships in a new place.”