Head coach Jalie Mitchell welcomes back North Texas alum Kelby Jones to the Mean Green women’s basketball staff as an assistant coach.
Jones returns to Denton after spending the past four seasons as a member of the Texas women’s basketball staff, most recently serving as the program’s basketball analyst coordinator. His responsibilities focused on assisting with basketball philosophy development, game preparation and scouting, skill development and special-situation offensive study.
“Kelby is one of the most loyal people I have encountered,” Mitchell said. “He knows how to connect and build genuine relationships. He willingly invests his time and energy into others’ success. I trust him and his work 100 percent. It makes my heart happy to bring Kelby home. I know that our UNT family will welcome him back with open arms. The opportunity to help your alma mater continue to build champions and prepare leaders is unique. Kelby is primed and ready for that task.”
Before working with Longhorns, Jones spent four years as Director of Managerial Operations as an undergraduate at UNT, beginning in 2012. He was the team’s head manager and was promoted to the program’s interim basketball operations director his senior year. Jones was responsible for film exchange, team travel, practice schedules, the scout team, equipment and assisted with on-campus recruiting. In 2015, he was nominated for the “Hardest Working Employee” award at the University of North Texas.
“I’m extremely excited for the opportunity to return to Denton and coach at my alma mater,” Jones said. “I want to thank Coach Mitchell and the rest of the Mean Green family who have welcomed me back with open arms. I can’t wait to work with this talented group of young ladies. Go Mean Green!”
During the past four seasons as a member of the Texas staff, the Longhorns compiled a record of 95-37 (.720) for an average of 24 wins per season and earned three NCAA Tournament appearances, including a pair of NCAA Sweet 16 showings. Texas ranked within the top-25 nationally in rebounding margin in each of his four years, including three top-six national rankings in that category. Jones’ contributions to Texas recruiting efforts resulted in two top-three national classes, according to espnW Hoop Gurlz and six McDonald’s All-Americans.
In 2018-19, Jones served as the program’s video coordinator where he oversaw video exchange and the breakdown of opponent and individual video scouting, along with on-campus recruiting and other duties. In his first two seasons, Jones was the program’s graduate assistant. In that role, he managed the team’s day-to-day equipment needs, coordinated scheduling for managers and practice players, assisted with game and opponent scouting, and was heavily involved in on-campus recruiting.
“Kelby Jones was born a star,” Mitchell said. “When I accepted this job years ago, he was a women’s basketball student manager. I was told that he was selfless, an extremely hard worker who made everyone around him better, and that his blood was Mean Green. Truer words have never been spoken. Kelby earned his degree, went on to Texas to gain some very valuable years of experience and is now ready to hit the ground running as a coach.”
Jones earned his master’s degree in physical education-teacher education from the University of Texas in May 2018. A native of Pottsboro, Texas, and a 2012 graduate of Pottsboro High School, Jones earned a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology from UNT in May 2016.