JAMESTOWN – Jamestown High School has announced its 2019 Commencement Speaker, Bryan Hodgson.
Hodgson is a 2005 graduate of Jamestown High School and is currently the assistant basketball coach at the University of Alabama. JHS Commencement Ceremony is Friday, June 21 at 7 p.m. in the Chautauqua Institution Amphitheater.
“I am humbled and honored to return home to Jamestown to serve as commencement speaker for the graduating class of 2019,” said Hodgson. “The city of Jamestown, and Jamestown High School, will always hold a special place in my heart and I am excited to share my story. Several coaches and teachers at JHS have played a huge part in my rise as a college basketball coach and I am thrilled to show students from the same background as myself that anything is possible with hard work and determination.”
Hodgson is in his first season as an assistant coach at the University of Alabama and was one of the first hires made by first-year head coach Nate Oats. Hodgson came to the University of Alabama after having spent four seasons with Oats at the University of Buffalo where together they helped take the men’s basketball program to unprecedented heights. The Bulls were ranked for 20 weeks in the Associated Press Top-25 throughout the 2019 season, which marked the first time in school history the program had earned a national ranking. Buffalo went on to climb as high as No. 14 in the nation, which was the highest ranking by any MAC team in past 40 years. Additionally, the 32 victories not only set a program record, but also was the most wins ever by any Mid-American men’s basketball program.
Considered one of the top recruiters in the country, Hodgson led the UB recruiting efforts and was responsible for the addition of a large make-up of the Buffalo roster, which had so much success under Oats’ leadership. Hodgson was one of 30 assistant coaches nationally named to the 2016 Under Armour 30-under-30 Team by the National Association of Basketball Coaches.
“We are very excited to have Bryan return to his Alma Mater as our featured commencement speaker,” said Jamestown High School Principal Mike McElrath. “Bryan’s story is a compelling one, and I know he’ll make a special connection with our student population. We are especially thankful that he was able to maintain his commitment to this event as he takes on a new and exciting role in his coaching career.”
Prior to his time at Buffalo, Hodgson served as the assistant coach at Midland (Texas) College, where he helped lead the team to a six-win turnaround during the 2014-15 season. Hodgson served as an assistant coach from 2010 through 2013 at Jamestown Community College, where he also helped turn around a program upon his arrival. He coached 14 players who received scholarships to four-year schools after their graduation from JCC, coaching nine all-region players during his time.
Hodgson played two seasons at Jamestown Community College, serving as a two-year captain, before heading to the Fredonia State, where he finished his education and served as an assistant coach.
He is the founder of the I-90 Elite AAU Basketball Team, assisting a number of players earning college scholarships. Hodgson also has served as a counselor at a number of prestigious camps, including Duke, Maryland, West Virginia, Syracuse, Michigan State, amongst others.
Hodgson earned his undergraduate degree in sports management from Fredonia State in 2011 and his master’s in education from the University of the Southwest in 2015.