Scott Padgett Basketball Camps!
Scott Padgett, the former collegiate standout at the University of Kentucky, NCAA champion and first-round NBA draft pick, was officially named the 28th head basketball coach at Samford University on June 6, 2014. As one of the top up-and-coming young coaches in the nation, Padgett quickly transformed the Bulldogs’ program into a Southern Conference championship competitor and rapidly revamped Samford’s recruiting efforts; turning the beautiful, head-turning Southern university to a destination campus.
In 2015-16, just Padgett’s second season at the helm, Samford vastly improved under his leadership and registered its best win total in six years, dating back to 2009. With talented sophomore point guard Christen Cunningham and All-SoCon performers Darius Jones-Gibson and Wyatt Walker leading the way, the Bulldogs opened the season with a brilliant 5-1 record and knocked off Nebraska on the road, 69-58, in Lincoln, Neb. Samford’s double-digit victory on the road at Nebraska proved to be the school’s first triumph against a Big 10 opponent. Additionally, the Bulldogs finished the 2015-16 season with a solid 10-5 record against non-conference opponents.
Following his inaugural campaign as the Bulldogs’ head coach, Padgett was named a finalist for the 2015 Joe B. Hall award, which is presented annually to the top first-year coach in college basketball. Padgett, during his first season as head coach at Samford University, compiled 13 wins and six SoCon victories with the Bulldogs. Boasting a roster comprised of just three seniors and a trio of juniors, Padgett guided his young Bulldogs to early success in his initial season heading the program. With a roster featuring five sophomores and four true freshmen in 2014-15, the future proved to be bright for the Bulldogs’ basketball team. The Samford University basketball team completed Padgett’s first season as head coach with a 13-19 overall record. The Bulldogs steadily improved throughout the campaign and rattled off a five-game winning streak midway through the SoCon season.
Padgett, a Louisville, Ky., native was a first-round draft pick selected 28th overall by the Utah Jazz in 1999 and spent eight years in the NBA. The 6-foot-9 forward recorded 1,142 points in four years with the Jazz before spending the next two seasons with the Houston Rockets. He played the 2005-06 campaign with the New Jersey Nets. Padgett began the 2006-07 season with the Rockets before being traded to the Memphis Grizzlies, where he finished out his career.
During his time at Kentucky from 1995-99, Padgett played for legendary head coaches Rick Pitino and Tubby Smith. Padgett helped lead the Wildcats to the 1998 NCAA Championship, where he was named to the NCAA All-Final Four team, as well as the NCAA All-East Regional team and All-Southeastern Conference during the regular season. In 1997, Padgett helped Kentucky to the NCAA championship game and was also named to the All-Final Four team. A true student-athlete, Padgett received All-SEC honors twice for his work on the hardwood, and he was also honored with Academic All-SEC honors in 1998 and 1999 for his success in the classroom. Padgett scored 1,252 points over his career, which ranks 32nd on Kentucky's all-time list.
Padgett spent two seasons as an assistant coach at Samford. He joined the Bulldogs’ staff in April of 2012 after spending the previous two seasons at Manhattan College. During his valuable stint at Manhattan, Padgett assisted in the development of the Jaspers’ post and front court players.
During the 2011-12 campaign, he played a key role in Manhattan’s 15-game win improvement as the Jaspers’ finished 21-13 and played in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament, the program’s first postseason appearance since 2006. The 15-game win improvement (all against D1 opponents) tied Manhattan with Toledo, Indiana and Nevada for the most in the country.
Prior to joining the Manhattan basketball program, Padgett spent the 2009-10 season at his alma mater on Head Coach John Calipari's staff. Kentucky advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament, finished with a 35-3 overall record and was ranked in the top-five of both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today polls, including a No. 1 ranking on Jan. 25.
Jake Headrick, a native of Hamilton, Ala., and graduate of the University of Montevallo, is in his fifth season as an assistant coach at Samford University.
A tireless recruiter, Headrick joined Samford’s staff in April of 2012 after spending the previous three years as the head coach at Chipola College in Marianna, Fla. Last season, Samford vastly improved under his leadership and registered its best win total in six years, dating back to 2009.
Headrick compiled an overall record of 67-22 during his stint at Chipola and also tallied a 20-16 mark in Panhandle Conference play. He joined the Chipola basketball staff for a second time in 2008-09 after serving as an operations assistant and video coordinator at Ole Miss in Oxford, Miss., during 2007-08.
While at Ole Miss, Headrick helped the Rebels, a preseason last-place pick in the Western Division of the Southeastern Conference, to the semifinal round of the National Invitation Tournament and 24 wins, which was second most in school history. He handled administrative duties and assisted with both academics and on-campus recruiting.
During his first stint as an assistant coach at Chipola in 2006-07, Headrick helped lead the Indians to a NJCAA runner-up finish and the most wins in school history (33). While at Chipola, Headrick coached National Player of the Year JaMarcus Ellis, as well as a total of six players who went on to sign Division I scholarships. Headrick assisted with on-floor coaching, recruiting and scouting.
Before arriving at Chipola, Headrick served as an assistant coach at the University of Montevallo for a season, where he helped the Falcons reach the NCAA Division II Elite Eight and set a school record for victories with 29. At Montevallo, Headrick coached the Gulf South Conference Player of the Year James Hall and two All-Americans.
Headrick graduated from the University of Montevallo in 2005 with a bachelor of science degree in kinesiology. As a two-year letterman for the Falcons, Headrick helped the team win back-to-back GSC championships and reach the NCAA Division II Sweet Sixteen both seasons. During his playing days at Montevallo, Headrick helped the Falcons to a 49-16 record.
Headrick graduated from Hamilton High School in 2001, where he was a three-time all-county selection. He averaged 21 points per game his senior season and helped the team to its first 20-win season in seven years.
Sidney Ball, a native of Duncanville, Ala., joined Samford’s coaching staff in the summer of 2014 after spending the previous season at Mississippi State University in Starkville, Miss.
After starring at UAB during his playing days from 1999-2004, Ball spent the next nine years working as an academic counselor at Mississippi State, Georgia State and the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB).
A four-year letterwinner at UAB, Ball helped lead his squad to a 22-10 overall record as a senior, as well as a 12-4 mark in Conference USA competition. He also played a key role in the Blazers’ upset of top-seeded Kentucky in the 2004 NCAA Tournament as the Blazers earned a trip to the Sweet 16. Ball finished his illustrious collegiate career as a two-time captain.
Ball spent six seasons working in UAB’s academic services department following his graduation in 2005. His main responsibilities included tracking the academic progress of the Blazers’ women’s basketball, cross country and track and field teams, as well as assisting with the CHAMPS/Life Skills program.
Prior to joining Mississippi State’s basketball staff as the academic counselor in 2013, Ball spent the previous two years at Georgia State University in Atlanta, Ga., where he was in charge of student-athlete community service for the entire athletic department. Ball helped organize over 5,000 hours of community service for student-athletes during his time with the Panthers. While advising the men’s basketball team at Georgia State, Ball helped lead the team to its highest grade-point average in three seasons. His teams also won a number of academic awards.
Charles Newton is in his fifth full season at Samford University and his third as assistant coach. He was promoted to his current position in June of 2014 by Head Coach Scott Padgett. Prior to being named an assistant coach, Newton served two seasons as the Bulldogs’ video coordinator. Newton joined Samford’s staff in April of 2012 under then Head Coach Bennie Seltzer. A native of Lexington, Ky., and former player at Tennessee Tech, Newton spent the 2011-12 campaign as the Director of Basketball Operations at his alma mater.
Newton, a graduate of the prestigious Lexington Catholic High School, played two seasons for the Golden Eagles before graduating from Tennessee Tech in 2011. He saw action in 15 games as a senior and turned in a stellar 68.8-percent shooting mark from the field — the highest field-goal percentage of any Golden Eagle. Newton also converted 3-point baskets at a 55.6 percent clip, going 5-for-9 from long range. His team-high 23 points led Tennessee Tech to a 106-44 win over Crowley’s Ridge on Dec. 30, 2010. During his tenure with the Golden Eagles, Newton was named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Honors Court for his strong academics, and received the team’s John P. Hendrix Leadership Award. He also participated in a Reach USA foreign ministries program in which he traveled to China to play basketball with other players from the Lexington area.
In high school, Newton led Lexington Catholic in steals and assists and was a Team Captain. He comes from a rich family background in coaching and athletic administration — his grandfather, C.M. Newton played at Kentucky and served as head basketball coach at Alabama and Vanderbilt. He later became athletic director at Kentucky, where he hired Rick Pitino to lead the basketball program. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2000.
Brandon Gilbert is in his third season as the Director of Basketball Operations at Samford University under Head Coach Scott Padgett. In his role, he is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the men’s basketball program, travel planning, game scheduling, directing the summer basketball camps, and various other duties. Gilbert also oversees the team’s student managers and assists with video scouting and game planning.
Gilbert spent the previous three years at the University of Florida (2011-2014). At Florida, Gilbert experienced two Southeastern Conference championships (2013, 2014) and an SEC Tournament title (2014). Gilbert was a member of Billy Donovan’s staff that appeared in two Elite Eights (2012, 2013) and a Final Four (2014) in the NCAA Tournament. Gilbert was also a part of history as Florida achieved a perfect 21-0 conference record in 2014, the first such accomplishment in the SEC, with the Gators finishing 36-3 overall. The Florida Gators accumulated a brilliant 91-22 record in Gilbert’s three seasons with the program.
A native of Miami, Fla., Gilbert graduated from the University of Florida with a bachelor’s degree in sociology in 2012 and earned his master’s degree in sport management in 2014.