MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A rising star in basketball coaching ranks, and St. Louis native, is making the jump to the NBA sidelines.
De Smet and Missouri State alum Blake Ahearn has accepted a job as an assistant coach with the Memphis Grizzlies.
Ahearn had been the head coach of the San Antonio Spurs' G-League affiliate in Austin. Ahearn was with the Austin Spurs for three seasons, winning the G-League title in 2018. He also coached at his alma mater of De Smet.
After graduating from De Smet, Ahearn was a star at Missouri State, and still holds NCAA Division 1 records for all-time free throw percentage (94.6%) and single season free throw percentage (97.5%).
The 36 year old played professionally abroad in the United States for almost a decade. He appeared in 19 career regular season NBA games, averaging 4.6 points.
Ironically, the Grizzlies just lost a St. Louis native assistant when Niele Ivey left to become the new head coach for the Notre Dame women's program.
In a release, the Grizzlies said Ahearn will help in player development efforts, including shooting development.
The NBA season is still pause due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the league has a plan in place to resume the season at Walt Disney World in Florida.