SMC head men’s basketball coach accepts position at USC-Upstate
Head Men’s Basketball Coach Jon Cremins has accepted the position of Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach at NCAA Division 1 USC-Upstate. His first day coaching the Spartans will be Monday, Nov. 6.
“Working at Spartanburg Methodist College has been an unforgettable experience thanks to President Scott Cochran, Athletic Director Tim Wallace, the faculty, staff and student-athletes who worked tirelessly to achieve the highest levels of success in the classroom and on the court these past two years,” said Cremins.
Cremins leaves SMC with an overall record of 55-11, guiding the Pioneers to two NJCAA postseason appearances in his two seasons at the college. In the 2016-17 season, Cremins was named the Region X Coach of the Year and District X Coach of the Year for the second year in a row after guiding SMC to a 29-4 record, top 25 rankings and finishing the Region X slate at 11-1.
Cremins also statistically finished in the top of the NJCAA in the following categories; field goal percentage (.537, 1st nationally), three point percentage (.44, 1st nationally), three-pointers made (12.6, 1st nationally), rebound margin (18.7, 8th nationally), points per game (95.8, 10th nationally), turnovers per game (9.6, 10th nationally) and free-throw percentage (.736, 11th nationally).
“Jon was a great addition to our staff and did a fantastic job with our basketball program,” said Tim Wallace, SMC athletic director. “His record speaks for itself, but we greatly appreciate the relationships he had with his players and other members of the SMC coaching staff. We wish him continued success in his move across town.”
Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach Nori Johnson will serve as interim head coach. Johnson is entering his third season with the Pioneers after helping guide the team to a 29-4 record, Region X championship and a bid in the NJCAA national tournament.
“We are pleased and fortunate to have Nori Johnson assume the role of interim head coach,” Wallace said. “His familiarity with the players and system should make for a seamless transition. He is well respected by the players and deserves this opportunity.”
A four-year letter winner at the College of Charleston under “Final Four” Coach Bobby Cremins and later Doug Wojcik, Johnson helped lead the Cougars to wins over Baylor, Tennessee, Clemson and Boston College, as well as two trips to the Southern Conference championship game.
Johnson has played professionally overseas with BBC Magdeburg Otto Baskets of the German League’s B Division. He returned to his hometown of Greer, South Carolina, after one season to begin his coaching career at Spartanburg Methodist College.
Johnson holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the College of Charleston. He is a graduate of James F. Byrnes High School where he was the first basketball player to sign a Division 1 basketball scholarship. Johnson also attended Fork Union Military Academy where he played for legendary prep coach Fletcher Arritt.