In just two seasons as head coach at ODU, Jeff Jones has guided the Monarchs to 45 wins, including a 27-8 mark in 2015. The Monarchs finished second in Conference USA in their second year of competition in the league. Under Jones’ guidance, ODU advanced to the semifinals of the NIT at Madison Square Garden after reeling off wins over Charleston Southern, Illinois State and an exhilarating three-point buzzer-beating victory over Murray State. He eclipsed the 400 collegiate wins milestone in the Monarchs’ NIT-opener against Charleston Southern on March 18.
During the 2014-15 regular season, Jones’ Monarchs notched several big victories, as ODU took down nationally-ranked VCU and eventual NCAA Tournament team, Georgia State. His squad churned out 10 straight wins from Nov. 24 to Jan. 17, which included wins against C-USA foes Marshall and Charlotte as well as in-state rivals VCU, George Mason and William & Mary. Even more impressively under Jones, Old Dominion has won 24 straight games at the Ted Constant Center dating back to the 2013-14 season, which is the seventh-longest active home winning streak in NCAA Division I Basketball.
Under Jones’ leadership, redshirt junior Trey Freeman was named C-USA Newcomer of the Year, was an All-League first team selection and earned C-USA All-Academic Team honors.
Off the basketball court, Jones was honored nationally as the 2015 Barefoot Coach of the Year for his work, contributions and creation of awareness for Samaritan’s Feet, which provides shoes to impoverished children (both domestically and internationally).
Jones was named the 13th head men’s basketball coach at Old Dominion University on April 4, 2013. He has been a consistent winner at every school, posting a 23-year career mark of 402-313 mark which includes eight years at Virginia and 13 at American as well as his first two seasons at ODU.
In his first season as head coach at ODU, Jones guided the Monarchs to 18 wins, which led the nation with the biggest turnaround in total victories. ODU finished sixth in its first season in Conference USA and advanced to the semifinals of the College Basketball Invitational Post Season tournament.
His teams advanced to 11 post season appearances (two at ODU, six at UVA and three at AU), including a 1995 NCAA Elite 8, a 1993 NCAA Sweet 16 appearance and an NIT championship in 1992 while at UVA. Jones has a 211-183 record at American for 13 years and 146-104 as head coach at the University of Virginia.
One of the most respected teachers in the collegiate ranks, Jones has developed 49 players who have played or are still playing professionally, including six in the NBA (John Crotty, Cory Alexander, Jamal Robinson, Bryant Stith, Junior Burrough and Courtney Alexander). Three of Jones’ players have played in the NFL, and as an assistant coach six of his former players have played in the NBA. Additionally seven of his former assistant coaches went on to become head coaches.
Four of Jones’ last six teams at American won 20 or more games and two Patriot League championships. Jones led the Eagles to a 20- win season in 2011-12 and advanced to the CollegeInsider.com postseason tournament. His 2010-11 squad went 22-9 with 11-non conference wins, and advanced to the Patriot League semifinals, while the 2008-09 team capped off the season with a 24-8 overall record, matching the program’s record for wins, and a 13-1 Patriot League mark. The Eagles led the nation in road wins that season with 11 and their 59.1 points per game allowed average ranked 11th nationally. Jones was named Patriot League Coach of the Year and NABC District 13 Coach of the Year in 2009.The 2007-08 Eagles captured the Patriot League title, and advanced to the school’s first ever NCAA Tournament appearance after compiling a 21-12 record, which included a 67-59 win at Maryland. In 2001-02, AU won the regular season title in compiling an 18-12 record.
At American, Jones was the school’s winningest all-time coach. During his tenure he developed 21 players who were named All-Patriot League, 23 who went on to play professionally, two who earned Patriot League Rookie of the Year honors (Andre Ingram in 2004 and Derrick Mercer in 2006), and two Patriot League Players of the Year (Patrick Doctor in 2002 & Mercer in 2009). Prior to arriving at American, Jones served as an assistant coach under Jerry DeGregorio at Rhode Island during the 1999-00 season.
Jones was named head coach at UVA in 1990 at age 29, following a standout playing career with the Cavaliers, and eight years as an assistant coach under Terry Holland. He was the youngest head coach in the history of the Atlantic Coast Conference at age 29 and in eight years compiled 146 wins for a .584 winning percentage. He led Virginia to six postseason appearances (five NCAA, one NIT), one regular-season ACC championship, and four, 20-win campaigns. Virginia’s win over Virginia Tech during the 1994-95 regular season gave Jones his 100th career victory, making him the second-fastest coach in school history and the fifth-fastest in ACC history to accomplish that feat. He also directed the Cavaliers to five of their top six seasons for field goal percentage defense. In winning the 1992 NIT championship, Jones became the first person to win the NIT title as both a player and a coach.
Prior to his eight-year run as head coach, Jones was an assistant coach for eight years on Terry Holland’s staff at Virginia. During his tenure as an assistant, Jones was a part of the Cavaliers’ overall record of 162-95 (.630), participating in six NCAA Tournaments while advancing to the Final Four in 1984 and the Elite Eight in 1989.
A native of Owensboro, KY., Jones had a standout career at Apollo High School in Owensboro before playing the point guard position for Virginia from 1978-82. His father Bobby Jones was the head coach at Kentucky Wesleyan from 1972-1980, winning the 1973 NCAA Division II national title. As a four-year starter for the Cavaliers, Jones was known as a leader and prolific passer. With Jones directing the potent offense, UVA compiled an overall record of 102-28 (.785) while leading the Cavaliers to two NCAA and two NIT tournaments. Virginia captured the 1980 NIT title and advanced to the NCAA Final Four in 1981.
Jones finished his career as Virginia’s all-time assist leader (598) while also setting the single-season record with 200 assists during the 1979-80 season. Later, he saw both of those records eclipsed by his own player, John Crotty. Jones served as team captain as a senior during the 1981-82 season and played in 129 games during his career. During that time he averaged 6.6 points and 4.6 assists per game while shooting 52.2 percent from the field and 74.3 percent from the free-throw line. Jones was selected in the fourth round of the 1982 NBA draft by the Indiana Pacers.
Jones is married to the former Danielle Decker of Virginia Beach and is the father of three children, Meghann, Madison Perry, and Jeffrey Rober who is a member of the University of Virginia basketball squad. He graduated from the University of Virginia in 1982 with a bachelor of science degree in psychology. Jones is currently first vice-president of the NABC.