Bio entering 2017-18
Jay Morris enters his first season at San Diego State as the director of player development.
Morris comes to SDSU after spending the 2016-17 season at Long Beach State as the Director of Player Development. In this position, Morris was responsible, in part, for developing an off-court curriculum focused on developing skills and relationships that would assist student-athletes after basketball. Morris was concurrently enrolled in a Master of Arts program which allowed him to also work with the players on the floor. With his background in skill development, a number of players saw improvements in their on-court production.
During the 2015-16 season, Morris was an assistant coach at Nevada where he worked under former NBA head coach Eric Musselman. In his one season at Nevada, the team experienced tremendous success both on the court and in recruiting. The new staff took over a team that had won just nine games the previous season and during Morris' stint at Nevada, the team won 24 games, which was a 15-game improvement. The Wolf Pack also went on to win the CBI Tournament. Defensively, the team was the 13th-most improved defensive team in the nation and offensively, the team ranked 17th nationally in field-goal percentage.
Morris was hired to Nevada largely because of his recruiting ties to Southern California, an area that the new staff planned to target. In his short time at Nevada, Morris was credited with being the lead recruiter for Wolf Pack signees Lindsey Drew, Devearl Ramsey, Josh Hall and Kenny Wooten. All four student-athletes were highly recruited and Nevada beat out a number of institutions in Power 5 conferences for their commitments. The Wolf Pack was named in several publications for its recruiting accomplishments. Rivals ranked Nevada's recruiting class 35th in Division I college basketball and 247sports tabbed the Wolf Pack with having the 51st-best recruiting class in the nation and the second-best recruiting class in the Mountain West. This was the greatest recognition for one recruiting class in the school's history.
Before joining the Wolf Pack, Morris spent five seasons as an assistant coach at Cal State Northridge under the headship of former NBA player Reggie Theus. His recruitment efforts at CSUN include signing Stephan Hicks, the Big West Freshman of the Year; signing Amir Garrett, a transfer from St. John's and former top-100 high school prospect; recruiting highly touted Mountain West transfer Kendall Smith from UNLV; and recruiting Pac-12 transfer Darin Johnson from Washington. On the court, Morris was very involved in the player development of both the perimeter and interior players and was also instrumental in scouting, as well as offensive and defensive game planning. While assisting Theus with the CSUN offense in 2013-14, the Matadors ranked in the top 10 nationally in free-throw percentage (1st), free throws made (2nd) and free throws attempted (8th).
Prior to his time at CSUN, Morris spent two seasons as the director of basketball operations at Long Beach State. Morris was part of a staff that in 2009 was voted by ESPN.com as having the 10th-ranked recruiting class among mid-majors. His job duties at Long Beach State included coordinating team travel, film exchange, serving as camp director, maintaining its recruiting data base and monitoring academic progress. The 2009-10 49ers also team advanced to the Big West championship game.
As a member of the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC), Morris has twice coached in the Reese's NABC College All-Star Games played at the Final Four, where he had the opportunity to work with two legendary basketball coaches, Billy Tubbs and Bill Hodges. Morris also served on the NABC Assistant Coaches Committee.
Prior to coaching at the collegiate level, Morris was the assistant basketball and strength coach at his alma mater, Westchester High School in Los Angeles for three years. While at Westchester, he implemented and supervised the strength and conditioning routines. He also coached six players who went on to play NCAA Division I basketball. In addition, Morris was the founder of D.R.E.A.M., where he focused on training high school, college and professional athletes. He also assisted high school athletes during their college athletic recruitment.
Morris was a standout basketball and football star at Westchester and in 1998, he gained all-league and all-city honors as a quarterback. He played junior college basketball at both Citrus College and Los Angeles Southwest College before transferring to Cal Lutheran, where he played two years of football as a cornerback and punt returner. He later played for the Bakersfield Blitz of the Arena Football League for one season in 2004.
Morris earned his bachelor's degree in kinesiology from Cal State Dominguez Hills and master's degree in coaching and athletic administration from Concordia University.