CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - JMU has hired Mark Byington as the new men’s head basketball coach. The Virginia native out of Salem returns to the Commonwealth after seven years at Georgia Southern.
“One of the things that drew me to the job at James Madison is understanding that there is a passionate fan base that loves James Madison," says Byington. "The city of Harrisonburg embraces it. So I want us to be one with the community. I want the program to be something they can be proud of. I want to play an exciting brand of basketball that brings the arena to be packed and to be a hot ticket in town.”
The former eagles head coach led GSU to a 131-97 record. He was also the first Georgia Southern coach to win 20 or more games in three consecutive seasons in his final three in Statesboro in more than 30 years.
Prior to Georgia Southern, Byington spent seven years as the top assistant coach at College of Charleston under legendary head coach, Bobby Cremins.
“Once in a while you just have that feeling in your stomach that intuitively you have the right person,” says JMU athletic director Jeff Bourne. “He did a great job. For us, he gave us hope for the future.”