USC basketball coach Andy Enfield has hired former San Diego State assistant Tony Bland as his associate head coach, a source confirmed on Wednesday.
The news was first reported by the San Diego Union-Tribune.
Bland played shooting guard at Los Angeles Westchester and led the Comets to the California state title in 1998. He played two years at Syracuse before transferring to San Diego State. Bland was the leading scorer for the Aztecs in his senior season and was a two-time all-conference selection.
He joined the San Diego State staff two years ago after a professional career in Europe. It was an emotional decision for Bland to leave his alma mater to join the USC staff, and one that he wrestled with for several days.
“It was the hardest decision I’ve ever made in my life,” Bland told the Union-Tribune.
The news comes two days after Pepperdine coach Marty Wilson tweeted that his assistant, Jason Hart, would also be joining Enfield's staff.
“Jason Hart will be joining the new USC staff,” Wilson wrote. “They are getting a first class person, family man & hard worker. Much respect”
Hart played at Inglewood High School and attended Syracuse from 1996-2000. He was a four-year starter at point guard for the Orange and left as the school’s all-time leader in steals. After playing professionally for 10 years, Hart coached for one year at Woodland Hills (Calif.) Taft and led them to the L.A. City title and then had one year on the Pepperdine staff.