The Southern University Jaguars finished the season with a record of 21-11 and cut the nets down for the 2nd year in a row at home as they claimed the regular season and SWAC Tournament titles.
If you look at the Southern team last year that fell just short of their championship goals, the biggest change you would see is the person who now sits on the bench for the Jaguars, 1st year coach Carlos Funchess.
On Tuesday of last week, Funchess was named the SWAC Coach of the Year after leading the Jaguars to a 14-4 conference record in his first season as head coach.
“Our goal as a team was to win the regular season conference championship, and [now that we’ve done that] our ultimate goal is to win the tournament championship,” said Funchess prior to the start of this year’s SWAC Tournament in Alabama.
Despite Funchess’ relatively short tenure as Southern’s coach, him being honored as Coach of the Year wasn’t a surprise to anyone in the SWAC.
Finishing the regular season with the 2nd-highest scoring defense in the SWAC, as well as tallying two win streaks of at least 5 games this season, Funchess and the Jags proved themselves to be legitimate contenders for the SWAC crown all season.
“Anytime your colleagues believe that you deserve to be honored like that, it’s great. But it always goes back to your staff. We have an outstanding staff , one of the best in the country I think, not just in the SWAC. They check all of the boxes,” said Coach Funchess on being chosen as SWAC Coach of the Year.
2nd year assistant coach Jeremy Bonin and first year assistant Majorie Cotton are just a few of Funchess’ staff that he believes to have played dividends to this team’s success throughout the season.
“At the end of the day, we just have to go out and win the games. You do the usual, you go through preparation, and you get ready for the next”, said Funchess when asked about his mindset for the team throughout the season.
Congratulations to Coach Funchess and the Jaguars on a championship season, and good luck going forward in the NCAA Tournament.