Originally created 05/10/04

Jaguars dip in for new coach



Darren "Dip" Metress will be announced as the Augusta State men's head basketball coach at a press conference today, according to sources close to the school.

Metress, a former Augusta State assistant under then-basketball coach and current athletic director Clint Bryant, will become the fifth coach in school history when he officially is named at a formal ceremony at 2 p.m. today on the school's main campus at Washington Hall.

He is replacing seven-year coach Gary Tuell, who resigned two weeks ago to take the reins at Nova Southeastern, a Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Division II school in the Sunshine State Conference.

Metress is married - his wife, Heather, is from Lincolnton, Ga. - and has one child, a daughter, Elizabeth Margaret. He was a finalist for the Lander job, but lost out to Bruce Evans, an assistant coach at Division I Gardner-Webb, who was hired March 30.

Metress earned his Masters of Education in Supervision and Administration from Augusta State in 1992.

For the past eight seasons he has guided Belmont Abbey, and his teams have made frequent trips back to the area, mostly to play Paine College.

In the past three seasons, Metress led the Crusaders to two Carolinas-Virginia Athletic Conference titles, two NCAA Tournament appearances and a Division II national ranking.

Metress will inherit a Jaguars team that finished 11-17 overall last season and fell to second in the Peach Belt North Division after winning the title an unprecedented five consecutive seasons.

Reach Chris Gay at (706) 823-3645 or chris.gay@augustachronicle.com.