Aug. 29, 2011
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Southern Miss announced Monday the addition of Leonard Perry to an assistant basketball coach position pending the approval by the Board of Trustees of the Institute of Higher Learning.
Perry will take over for Ricky Wilson, who accepted the head coaching position at Baton Rouge Community College.
Perry comes to Southern Miss after spending the previous six years with the Indiana Pacers. Perry served as an assistant coach during the 2006-07 season. He then spent 2007-11 as an Advanced Scout for the Pacers. Beginning in 2008, he was in charge of NBA and NBA Developmental League Pro Scouting.
Prior to Indiana, Perry was the head coach at his alma mater, Idaho, from 2001-06, where he led the Vandals to a 48-97 record over five seasons. During his tenure, Perry coached eight All-Big West Conference players.
Before Idaho, Perry spent six years as a coach for Larry Eustachy at Iowa State and Utah State. Perry went to Iowa State in 1998 as an Assistant Coach. The following year, he was promoted to Associate Head Coach. Perry helped lead the Cyclones to two NCAA Tournament Appearances, including the 2000 Big XII regular season and tournament championship and a spot in the Elite Eight.
Perry was an assistant coach at Utah State from 1995-98. While in Logan, he helped lead the Aggies to a 63-32 record, including two 20-win seasons. In 1996-97 and 1997-98, Utah State won back-to-back Big West Conference regular season championships, and made the NCAA Tournament in 1997-98.
Perry began his coaching career at Idaho as a student assistant coach from 1993-95, first under Larry Eustachy and then for Joe Cravens. In his first year as a student assistant, the Vandals won the 1993 Big Sky Conference regular season championship with a 24-8 record.
Perry was no stranger to success as a player at Idaho. As the starting point guard, he led the Vandals to a 25-6 mark, the Big Sky Conference Tournament championship and a berth in the 1990 NCAA Tournament. He was known for tough defense, leadership and hard work and received the team's most improved player award in 1990 and the Ronald White Award in 1991 as the Vandals' most outstanding player.
The former McLennan (Texas) Junior College standout arrived in Idaho with impressive credentials as one of Street & Smith's top junior college transfer players. Perry earned All-North Texas Junior College Athletic Conference honors as a sophomore, averaging 16.2 points per game. He also averaged 15.0 points as a freshman on a McLennan team that finished 27-6.
Perry graduated from Idaho in 1995 with a degree in general studies with an emphasis in English.
The Dallas, Texas native was an honorable mention All-American at Kimball High School, where he earned All-State, All-District and All-Metro honors. The four-year letterwinner scored 32 points in the Texas Class 5A state championship game his senior year, and led Kimball to a four-year record of 126-12.
Perry and his wife, Christina, have two daughters, Keisha Ann and Kayla Corrine, and a son, Justin Leonard. Perry also has one son, Leonard III.
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