Clemson loses men’s basketball assistant Riley

CLEMSON – Clemson assistant coach Richie Riley is leaving the school to take the head coaching position at Nicholls State, a Division I program in Thibodaux, La.

Riley, 33, had served on Brad Brownell’s staff the past two years, brought in from UAB to replace Earl Grant. Grant became the College of Charleston head coach after the 2013-14 season.

“Richie had a great impact on our program at Clemson. He was creative and worked hard every day to put our program in a position to be successful,” Brownell said in a statement released on Nicholls State’s website. “His growth as a man and as a coach has been a joy to watch. Richie is going to be a fantastic coach in the future.”

It is a total rebuild job for Riley, who is from the state of Kentucky and has never coached in Louisiana before. Nicholls State has just one winning season in the past 18 years, having suffered through six straight years with single-digit wins in the middle of the last decade. The Bears were 11-23, and 6-12 in Southland Conference action this past year.

Brownell will seek a replacement to join assistants Mike Winiecki and Steve Smith.