For the second time in less than a week, Washington Huskies men’s basketball coach Lorenzo Romar made a change to his coaching staff, hiring Lamont Smith as an assistant coach.
Smith spent the past four season as an assistant to Herb Sendek at Arizona State.
Smith was a graduate assistant to Romar at Saint Louis University from 1999-2001.
“Lamont is very energetic and a dynamic recruiter,” Romar said in a press release. “I know Lamont really well. I was able to give him his first job and I coached against him when he was a player at the University of San Diego. He has a great basketball mind and will have a big impact on our program.”
The need for a recruiter became evident after assistant and top recruiter Raphael Chillious left for Villanova. Romar filled Chillious’ position by hiring longtime Western Washington University coach Brad Jackson.
To make room for Smith, assistant coach Paul Fortier, a former Huskies forward, becomes director of player personnel and player development. Fortier spent seven years as an assistant for Romar.
“Paul brings a lot of value to our program and he will excel in his role as the director of player personnel and player development,” Romar said. “He will be vital in ensuring that Washington remains one of the top programs in the nation.”
Smith leaves a struggling ASU program filled with player defections for a Huskies program that has been a part of four consecutive Pacific-10 or Pac-12 titles.
“I have always really watched his career and the success he has had,” Smith said of Romar. “Any time you can coach with a man that has his type of character and work ethic, you just kind of gravitate towards that. I am very excited that I will be able to wake up every day and help Washington build on the success they have had and help them win championships.”
Before joining ASU, Smith was at Santa Clara from 2007-08 as Kerry Keating’s top assistant. Smith spent six seasons as an assistant for Randy Bennett at Saint Mary’s before joining Santa Clara after playing at the University of San Diego.firstname.lastname@example.org 253-597-8483 blog.thenewstribune.com/uwsports @RyanDivish