Georgia men’s basketball coach Tom Crean has found at least one member of his new staff, and it is someone who knows the area well: former Georgia Tech assistant Chad Dollar.
Dollar has been hired as an assistant coach at Georgia, the first official hire to Crean’s new staff. UGA confirmed the news that was first reported by Ken Sugiura of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“I’ve respected and admired Chad Dollar for a long time,” Crean said in a statement. “His coaching tree started in his own home and has progressed through his career with many great experiences. We’re excited to add Chad’s ability to lead young people and to teach the game and also the life skills that will serve them well. He brings a tenacity, not only to the court but to the recruiting trail and has helped recruit, mold and develop some outstanding players over his career. We’re excited to have him at the University of Georgia.”
Dollar gives Crean an experienced and well-regarded recruiter in the highly-talented Atlanta area. Dollar was on the Georgia Tech staff with former coach Brian Gregory for five seasons. After Gregory was fired two years ago, Dollar spent the 2016-17 season at Auburn, then spent this past season with Gregory at South Florida.
“I’m excited to be coming back home to Georgia,” Dollar said in a statement. “I’m also excited to have the opportunity to work with Coach Crean, who I feel like is one of the best coaches in the country.”
Crean and Gregory are both former assistants at Michigan State under Tom Izzo, so it’s likely that the two discussed Dollar.
Dollar is an Atlanta native who went to Douglass High School. His father Don was a longtime high school coach in the Atlanta area, and his brother Cameron played at UCLA and was later the head coach at Seattle.
While at Georgia Tech, Dollar was lead recruiter on Marcus Georges-Hunt (All-ACC, now in NBA) and Josh Okogie (All-ACC as a sophomore). Here’s a story by Sugiura on how Dollar brought Okogie to Georgia Tech.
“It’s a unbelievable situation for me, and I think it will be a rewarding experience,” Dollar said in the statement. “I’m looking forward to seeing my family on a regular basis and high school teammates and guys I competed against growing up and high school and AAU coaches who I know both from when I was playing and my career as a college coach.”
Chad Dollar spent his first three seasons as a college basketball player at South Florida before finishing at Milligan. He went on to work as an assistant coach at Western Carolina, Eastern Kentucky, Georgia Southern, Murray State, Arkansas State, LSU and Wichita State.
Crean will have two more assistant coach spots to fill on his staff. Jonas Hayes remains a candidate to be retained, but a decision on that has not been made.