Coach Ben Hicks – TopConnect

October 12, 2020 | News | 0 Comments

CVCC Head Basketball Coach Benjamin Hicks to participate in national symposium

PHENIX CITY, AL— Chattahoochee Valley Community College (CVCC) Head Men’s Basketball Coach, Ben Hicks has been selected to participate in the inaugural TopConnect National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) symposium set for October 8th and 9th.  The inaugural class has 30 Head Men’s Basketball Coaches and 11 Head Women’s Basketball Coaches participating in this prestigious event.

TopConnect (formerly Villa 7) originated in 2003 by then Virginia  Commonwealth University Athletic Director Dr. Richard Sander, identifies the top basketball assistant coaches in the country, and connects them with mid-major Athletic Directors providing tremendous networking opportunities for both parties. The three-word mantra of “Connect. Prepare. Lead.” identifies the purpose of TopConnect.

CVCC President Jackie Screws could not be more proud of Hicks for this honor. “I know he will represent himself, the College, the community, and state well,” she said.

“I’m just honored to be a part of this and be able to share my perspective,” said Hicks. “This kind of networking opportunity will positively impact our students, and that’s why I do what I do. I want to help student-athletes be successful.”

Hicks was named head coach at CVCC in the summer of 2019. Prior to his current role, he served as the Head Men’s Basketball Coach/Faculty at Georgia Southwestern State University, the Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach at both Columbus State University and Jacksonville State University, and Athletic Director and Head Men’s Basketball Coach at Alabama Southern Community College. Hicks also worked at CVCC as Assistant Coach and Recruiter from 2005- 2007.

His experiences will serve him well as he participates in TopConnect NJCAA symposium. The presenters include former junior college coaches Buzz Williams (formally Navarro College, now Texas A&M), Steve Forbes (formally Northwest Florida State College, now Wake Forest), Brian “Penny” Collins (formally Columbia State CC, now Tennessee State), Jay Ladner (formally Jones County JC, now Southern Miss), Dr. Brittney Ezell (formally Okaloosa-Walton Junior College, now East Tennessee State), Chris Jans (formally Chipola College, now New Mexico State), Keitha Adams (formally Independence CC, now Wichita State), Ryan Ridder (formally Daytona State College, now Bethune-Cookman) and Chanda Rigby (formally Pensacola State College, now Troy). In addition to the former junior college coaches speaking, a panel of Division 1 athletic directors will discuss their expectations of a coaching staff, and a panel of current Division 1 assistant coaches will share their thoughts on their transition from Junior College to their current roles.

In total, three panels of current Division 1 Head Coaches will speak of their experiences on maintaining the success once hired at the Division 1 level, making the jump to D1 from junior college, and overall career development. Also, President and CEO of the NJCAA, Dr. Chris Parker, and Brandon Goble, CEO of JUCOAdvocate, will hold a conversation on breaking the stigma of junior college. Since the inception of Villa 7 (now TopConnect), the program has produced numerous Division 1 head coaches including Anthony Grant (Dayton), Buzz Williams (Texas A&M), Shaka Smart (Texas), Steve Forbes (Wake Forest), and recently Greg Gary (Mercer), Brett Nelson (Holy Cross) and Bryan Mullins (Southern Illinois).

TopConnect works in conjunction with East Tennessee State University’s Doctoral Program in Global Sport Leadership and is a subsidiary of Connected Media, LLC.

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