THE FLATS — A collegiate coaching veteran, Mark Simons returns to The Flats as an assistant coach for the Georgia Tech women’s basketball program, head coach MaChelle Joseph announced Thursday. Simons, who’s coaching career spans over 35 years, previously served on the Tech women’s basketball staff from 2006-08.
“I am very excited to add a coach with Mark’s experience to our women’s basketball staff,” commented Joseph. “I have a tremendous amount of respect for Mark. I know that we will have an impact on our post players and our player development program. The fact that Mark has coached in three different Power 5 conferences will be very valuable to our program.”
During his first tenure on The Flats, Simons helped guide the Jackets to a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances and 20-win campaigns, including a then-program best 22 wins in 2007-08. The back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances were the first postseason appearances under Joseph’s tutelage and first consecutive appearances in program history. On March 17, 2007, Tech won their first NCAA Tournament contest.
“I am excited about the opportunity to come back to Georgia Tech and work with MaChelle,” Simons said. “She has the program in a great place with an even brighter future. MaChelle has a terrific staff and an awesome group of young women. I’m eager to get started.”
Simons returns to Georgia Tech after most recently serving as an assistant coach at Michigan State from 2012-17. While with the Spartans, Simons helped lead MSU to four NCAA Tournament berths, four 20-win seasons, while working directly with the post players. Additionally, Simons was the academic liaison and handled the scheduling of games.
Prior to his arrival at Michigan State, Simons spent four years at Auburn as an assistant coach after his first stint on The Flats. At Auburn, Simons worked primarily with the post players, while also assisting with game management and scheduling. During his time at Auburn, the Tigers saw two NCAA Tournament berths, including a NCAA Tournament Second Round appearance in 2009 after the program posted a remarkable 30-4 record and clinched the SEC regular season title for the first time in 20 years. Simons also served as an assistant coach at Auburn during the 2005-06 season.
Also from 2008-12, Simons was an advance scout for the WNBA’s Washington Mystics.
Simons also served as the head men’s basketball coach at Elon University for 10 years (1993-2003). After guiding the program to a NCAA Division II Tournament appearance and South Atlantic Conference Tournament title in 2007, Simons helped transition the program to the Division I level beginning in 1997.
From 1991-93, Simons held the head coaching position at Georgia College after a five-year stint (1986-91) as the head coach and athletic director at St. Andrews College in Laurinburg, N.C. While at St. Andrews, he was named the 1988 South Region and Dixie Conference Coach of the Year, and the 1990 Carolinas Conference Coach of the Year.
Simons got his start in coaching as an assistant coach at Saginaw Valley State University (1976-86) after serving as an assistant coach at his alma mater Aquinas College (1975-76).
A native of Mt. Pleasant, Mich., Simons was a four-year letterwinner at Aquinas College. While coaching at SVSU, he earned a master’s degree from Michigan State in 1977.