Larry Brown’s staff complete: Tim Jankovich officially on SMU’s staff

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Larry Brown’s staff at SMU is finally complete.

After officially hiring Ulric Maligi as an assistant alongside former Illinois assistant Jerrance Howard, Brown completed his staff on Thursday afternoon. According to CBSSports.com, Tim Jankovich was brought on to complete Brown’s staff. Jankovich wouldn’t officially comment on it, but Jeff Goodman’s sources confirmed that the speculation was correct: Jankovich will be SMU’s coach-in-waiting. SMU announced that he will be titled associate head coach.

When the reports of Brown’s hiring first started trickling out more than a week ago, I wrote that bringing in Brown wasn’t nearly as bad of a hire as many had painted it to be.

My reasoning?

Brown is a terrific x’s-and-o’s coach, a guy that will immediately make SMU’s mediocre roster better simply with his ability to devise a game-plan. He also brings quite a bit of buzz to a program that has severely lacked it over the last … well, half-century. More importantly, reports had SMU bringing in an excellent staff to build the foundation for the program for a year or two before Brown inevitably moves on to another job.

And that was with Rod Strickland reportedly being on the staff, no Maligi.

With Maligi on board, the future looks even brighter for the Mustangs.

Howard has a terrific reputation as a recruiter, especially in the Chicago area. Maligi is connected all over Texas and is a former coach in the Dallas Mustangs AAU program, a powerhouse in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Maligi was previously an assistant coach at Houston, where he helped the Cougars land top 20 recruit Danuel House and topp 100 prospect Danrad “Chicken” Knowles.

With Jankovich, Howard and Maligi on board, SMU has the kind of coaching staff that can not only bring in elite talent, but has the coaching acumen to build that talent into a successful basketball program.

SMU has a long way to go, but the future looks bright for the Mustangs.

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @robdauster.