New Kentucky women’s basketball coach Kenny Brooks adds another assistant to staff

Kenny Brooks’ latest coaching hire demonstrates a dedication to strong guard play.

Former Charlotte women’s basketball assistant Ciara Gregory was named an assistant coach and director of recruiting operations for Kentucky on Wednesday, UK’s new head coach announced.

“I’m very grateful to be joining Coach Brooks and Big Blue Nation on this new journey,” Gregory said in a press release. “I can’t express how excited I am to be a part of this tremendous staff and rich tradition that is Kentucky basketball. I look forward to serving Coach Brooks, the staff and our student-athletes to the best of my ability. Let’s go, BBN!”

A former guard for Charlotte, Gregory most recently served as an assistant coach for the 49ers from 2022-24 after two seasons as a graduate manager. During her tenure as an assistant coach she worked with the guards, and the 49ers recorded a record of 50-44, including Conference USA regular season and tournament championships in 2021-22.

The 49ers joined the American Athletic Conference ahead of the 2023-24 season and finished 16-15 overall (9-9 AAC), led by guard Dazia Lawrence’s team-high 18.2 points per game.

Gregory also worked with 2022-23 double-figure scorers Mikayla Boykin (15.6 points) and Jada McMillian (12.3 points, 5.0 assists), as well as former Kentucky Wildcat Kameron Roach from 2021-23.

As a player, Gregory was a celebrated guard. Upon the conclusion of her playing career, Gregory held the records for career three-pointers both made (235) and attempted (695), highlighted by a career-best nine made threes against Florida International in 2017. Gregory also graduated a 1,000-point scorer, finishing with 1,031 from 2014-17.

Gregory is the fifth assistant coach hired by Brooks since his arrival in Lexington at the end of March. She joins associate head coach Lindsey Hicks, assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Radvile Autukaite, assistant coach Josh Petersen and director of player development and assistant coach Kendall Dillard. Only Gregory and Petersen did not move with Brooks from Virginia Tech.

Brooks has also named longtime James Madison and Virginia Tech staffer Tim Clark as his special assistant and chief of staff and former Hokies director of player personnel Will Sims as the Wildcats’ director of scouting and program analytics.

The Wildcats have nine players pledged to their 2024-25 roster, including returning sophomore guards Cassidy Rowe and Saniah Tyler. They’ve also signed a trio of transfers in Georgia Amoore and Clara Strack from Virginia Tech and Teonni Key from North Carolina. Tanah Becker, a 6-foot-1 wing from Hamilton Heights Christian Academy in Tennessee, 6-2 guard Lexi Blue of Lake Highland (Florida) Prep, 6-3 forward Amelia Hassett of Eastern Florida State College and 6-7 international prospect Clara Silva round out the current state of the roster.

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