ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. - After nine seasons at the helm of the Georgia College Women's Basketball program, head coach Maurice Smith has taken the head coach opening at Flagler College, the Saint athletic department announced Sunday.
Smith compiled a 131-123 record in his nine seasons as Bobcat head coach, highlighted by three Peach Belt Conference (PBC) Championship game appearances, including a 2011 PBC Tourney title.
In his nine seasons, Smith has coached Bobcat student-athletes to nine All-PBC honors, including one All-American. The team has also achieved elite levels academically, featuring a pair of Academic All-America honors and two Georgia College Valedictorians.
"My family and I have been blessed by this great institution and wonderful community in so many ways," said Smith. "Georgia College has been an integral part of our lives the last 20 years. I would like to sincerely thank (Director of Athletics) Wendell Staton for the opportunity he gave me to lead this program over the last nine years."
"My growth personally and professionally is a direct result from the fertile soil and environment Georgia College has created, and Wendell has been instrumental by providing the nourishment needed for me to grow into who I am today. My time spent here as a student-athlete was one of the best experiences a young person could ask for. It paved the way for relationships that will be cemented for a lifetime. The young ladies that I have had an opportunity to coach will be amongst the most memorable experiences for me. We have had phenomenal young ladies of high character come through this program and develop into great leaders in all walks of life. I am extremely proud of that and will cherish those relationships forever."
Smith spent over 18 years at Georgia College, arriving first as a player in 1999 after two seasons at Wallace Community College in Alabama. He was an All-PBC Second Team selection in 2001 for the Bobcats, after playing a sixth-man role on the best team in program history, the 1999-2000 Elite Eight squad.
He then joined the coaching ranks, first as a student assistant for men's basketball in 2003-04. He then continued on as a graduate assistant coach for two seasons from 2004-06. Smith moved to the women's side the next season in 2006-07 as the assistant coach and has worked with Bobcat women's basketball program since.
"The Georgia College Department of Athletics wishes Mo Smith and his family all the best in the next chapter of their lives as they move to Flagler College," said Staton. "Mo is an incredible leader with impeccable character and has been outstanding in every capacity. He is much more than an outstanding coach, and his authentic and positive impact has been felt not only in our department, but throughout our campus, and all over our community. Mo was the first coach I hired at Georgia College and I am forever grateful that he has been with me each day in creating our positive culture that Graduates Champions for Life."
Bobcat Athletics will begin a national search for the next head coach for GC Women's Basketball.
The Georgia College Department of Athletics, two-time winners of the PBC Commissioner's Cup, sponsors 11 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, Bobcat Athletics prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the teams' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at @GCBobcats on all social media formats for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit GCBobcats.PhotoReflect.com to purchase photo prints from home athletic contests.