Men’s basketball extends Dixon’s contract, hires new assistant coach

0
1923

Print Article
The Horned Frog men’s basketball program had a busy week for the offseason Wednesday and Thursday, locking in head coach Jamie Dixon through the 2023-24 season with a two-year contract extension and adding former UT-Arlington head coach Scott Cross as an assistant coach.

“We are very excited to announce the contract extension with Jamie Dixon,” Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Jeremiah Donati said. “We are committed to competing at the highest level, and Coach Dixon is the right person to lead us.”

Dixon completed his second season at TCU in March after leading the Horned Frogs to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 20 years. In his first season, he led TCU to its first postseason championship when in 2017. It was the first time since 1999 that TCU has had consecutive 20-win seasons and consecutive postseason appearances.

Dixon is 45-27 at TCU. The Frogs’ 9-9 Big 12 Conference record this past season was the best in their six seasons in the league and their most wins in any conference in 17 seasons. Dixon led the Frogs to a school-record 17 consecutive wins and an AP top 25 ranking for eight-straight weeks including a TCU-best ranking of No. 10.

TCU head coach Jamie Dixon talks about the importance of building upon the Horned Frogs’ NCAA Tournament appearance last season. (Photo by Cristian ArguetaSoto.)

His arrival altered the Horned Frogs’ perception among recruits, signing five four-star players starting with point guard Jaylen Fisher and giving TCU an international presence with recruits from Australia and New Zealand.

“TCU wasn’t on my radar until the arrival of Jamie Dixon,” No.1 overall junior college prospect and TCU signee Yuat Alok said.

Recruitment was a key factor in Dixon’s decision to hire Cross as an assistant coach. Cross was able to recruit many players to UTA during his 12 years as head coach at the university and brings numerous connections to Texas high school coaches.

“I think that’s one area maybe where I can help them,” Cross said of Dixon.

When Cross was let go by UTA, where he spent the last 22 years between his time as a player, assistant coach and head coach, Dixon said it made sense to bring him to Fort Worth.

“I met with him three days in a row and it was an obvious fit,” Dixon said. “No one has recruited in Texas longer than he has, especially in this area. He was just the best person for the job.”

TCU assistant coach Scott Cross addresses the media for the first time in the purple and white. (Photo by Cristian ArguetaSoto.)

Cross said the decision was easy to make, despite his being rumored to have had head coaching opportunities elsewhere and not knowing Dixon very well.

“I’ve been watching him from afar,” Cross said. “I’ve admired what he’s done over the years. I’ve watched how the program has changed over the last two years and really been kind of amazed how quickly they turned everything around.”

Cross added he preferred taking an assistant job that would allow him to stay in his Mansfield home where he and his family have lived since 1995 over waiting for another head coaching opportunity.

“It’s a chance to be part of a program that has a chance to win a championship and make some noise in the NCAA tournament,” he said. “It just seemed like the next step and the right move at the time.”

Cross said working with Dixon will be one of the main perks of the job.

“He’s one of the best in the business,” Cross said. “His worst year was 19 wins– who does that? Hopefully, I can come in and be some value and help them in some areas and help them win a championship.”