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|UNO assistant coach visits area|
When Derrick Jones had the chance to work on Joe Pasternack III's staff at the University of New Orleans, he jumped at the chance.
"Coach Pasternack is a great guy," said Jones, who represented Pasternack on a recruiting trip at a parish school Tuesday. "He is very ambitious and really hungry. He has great vision."
Pasternack, who went 19-13 last season at UNO in his first year as a head coach, moved to New Orleans from Ferriday with his family as a young boy.
Jones, a former coach at John Ehret High School, came to the Lakefront after a three-year assistant coaching stint at Samford, where he worked for New Orleans native Jimmy Tillette.
"That's where I got to know Joe," Jones said. "The biggest thing he sold me on was his drive and his work ethic."
The UNO assistant said this area is very important to the Privateer program.
"We really want to recruit the entire state," Jones said. "We're not just going to concentrate on New Orleans. This area is important to us, as well."
At Samford, Jones handled team travel, film exchange, on-floor coaching and recruiting. Prior to Samford, Jones broke into coaching as an assistant at John Ehret.
Jones spent two years with the Patriots from 2003-05, with the '05 squad posting a 27-4 record and a No. 2 ranking.
As an athlete, Jones spent two seasons at Mississippi State before transferring to Samford.
Jones led the Bulldogs to the 2000 NCAA Tournament and averaged 13.8 points per game as a senior the following year.
Jones, 30, graduated from Samford in 2001.
UNO finished 11-19, falling to South Alabama 62-60 in the Sun Belt Conference Tournament.
"We struggled this year," Jones said. "We had a lot of players inexperienced and a lot of guys have to adjust not only to college basketball, but life in general."
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