ATLANTA—With a long track record of winning and ties to Atlanta, NC State assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Gene Hill has been named the head women’s basketball coach at Georgia State University Director of Athletics Charlie Cobb announced on Thursday.
Following five successful seasons helping lead the Wolfpack to a 112-52 record, including three NCAA Tournament appearances, Hill becomes the 11th head coach of the Panthers in program history. Hill is coming off his most successful season in Raleigh, as the Wolfpack went 26-9 and advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament.
“Gene Hill is a proven coach and recruiter who knows Atlanta and what it takes to build a winning program,” Cobb said. “He brings a tremendous amount of energy and passion to our program. Gene has succeeded at the highest level and guided student-athletes to success on and off the court. We are delighted to welcome Gene Hill and his family to Georgia State as our women’s basketball coach.”
In his first season at NC State (2013-14), Hill helped lead the Wolfpack to a 25-8 record, a fourth-place finish in the ACC standings, and an NCAA Tournament appearance. After an 18-15 campaign in 2014-15 and a 20-11 season in 2015-16, Hill helped lead the Wolfpack to the NCAA Tournament Round of 32 in 2016-17 with an impressive 23-9 record (12-4 ACC).
He played a large role in mentoring 2017 All-ACC guards Miah Spencer and Dominique Wilson, both of whom were seniors during the successful 2016-17 season, eclipsed the 1,000-point mark at NC
Prior to his five years at NC State, Hill worked at Georgia Tech from 2009-12 as the Yellow Jackets made four consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament, including the program’s first Sweet 16 appearance in 2012.
Hill was heavily involved in the player development of three WNBA draft picks between 2010-12, including first-rounders Alex Montgomery and Sasha Goodlett at Georgia Tech.
“I couldn’t be more excited to have the opportunity to lead Georgia State Women’s Basketball into the future, and to join the Georgia State family,” Hill said. “Throughout this process, it was clear to me that Charlie, Kelcey and the team are committed to excellence both on and off the court, which has been staples of programs I’ve been a part of throughout my career. I’m excited to hit the ground running and to lead a program that the University and local communities will be proud of.”
Hill was one of just 14 assistant coaches from around the country chosen to participate in Advocates for Athletic Equity’s (AAE) annual “Achieving Coaching Excellence” (ACE) Professional Development Program for basketball coaches in June 2016. The program is recognized as helping to boost the careers of some of the top minority coaches in the college game.
Prior to joining the Yellow Jackets, Hill served six seasons on the Butler women’s basketball staff, including two years as associate head coach. He worked as the Bulldogs’ recruiting coordinator and assisted with on-court coaching.
Hill joined coach Beth Couture’s first Butler staff in 2002 after serving as the interim head women’s basketball coach at East Carolina University during the 2001-02 season.
The Bulldogs’ resurgence to the upper tier of the Horizon League was due in large part to the talent that Hill accumulated at Butler. His first recruiting class included Jackie Closser and Ellen Hamilton, two players who scored 1,000 points in their Butler careers. Additionally, the Bulldogs landed at least one player on the Horizon League’s All-Newcomer Team in each of Hill’s four years as recruiting coordinator.
Hill was the head women’s basketball coach at USC Spartanburg from 1999-01. While in Spartanburg, he recruited three USA Today Honorable Mention All-Americans and the 2000-01 Peach Belt Conference Freshman of the Year.
From 1997-99, Hill served as an assistant women’s basketball coach at Lander (S.C.) University. He helped lead the Bearcats to their first Peach Belt Conference Tournament championship and earned an NCAA Division II Tournament bid.
Hill graduated from Coker (S.C.) College with a degree in physical education in 1997. He grew up just outside of Atlanta in LaGrange, Ga.
While at Coker, Hill played for the Cobras’ basketball team for one season and also served as the assistant women’s basketball coach for three seasons.
Hill has been invited to attend The Villa 7 Consortium multiple times in Beaverton, Ore., a group of women’s basketball assistant coaches who are considered to be the next generation of rising head coaches in the country.
Hill and his wife, Heidi, have two children: daughter, Genevieve Ashlynn and son Guy Alexander.
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT GENE HILL:
“GSU has hired an excellent person and coach in naming Gene Hill as their new head coach. Gene’s passion for his home state of Georgia is a great asset as he returns to Atlanta. He is well respected in all aspects of the game as he has worked tirelessly to prepare himself to be a head coach. This is an exciting time for the GSU women’s basketball team and we, the Atlanta Dream, are excited to welcome him home.”
--Theresa Wenzel, President of the Atlanta Dream
“Gene Hill is a great hire for Georgia State. He checks all the boxes as a head coach. He’s going to be excellent on the court working with the players and coaching them up. He is very well connected in the recruiting circles with high school and travel ball coaches especially in the Atlanta area.
“He’s going to be an awesome ambassador for the university and the fans are going to love him. I know he’s excited about being at Georgia State and being a head coach and I really believe he’s going to do some unbelievable things there.”
--Wes Moore, Head Coach at NC State
“Gene Hill is the perfect choice to lead the Georgia State women’s basketball program. He was instrumental in our early success at Georgia Tech. He is an outstanding recruiter who has been successful throughout his career. I look forward to watching Gene lead Georgia State to unprecedented heights.
--MaChelle Joseph, Georgia Tech Women’s Basketball Head Coach