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Tennessee Athletics photo / Kim English, a Tennessee basketball assistant the past two seasons, was named Tuesday as the new head coach at George Mason University.

Tennessee basketball assistant Kim English was announced Tuesday morning as the new head coach at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia.

English spent the past two seasons working under Rick Barnes with the Volunteers.

"Kim English is a grand slam hire for George Mason," Barnes said through a release. "He's the total package. From the day he joined our staff at Tennessee, he made an immediate impact on our program. He has a unique gift for connecting with people and forming genuine relationships.

"I'm particularly proud that he gets the opportunity to begin his head-coaching career at the special place that also gave me my first big opportunity. I know he'll lead the Patriots to great success."

Arriving at Tennessee in April 2019, English helped the Vols sign three five-star guards — Keon Johnson, Jaden Springer and Kennedy Chandler.

English has replaced Dave Paulsen, who went 95-91 in six seasons. George Mason plays in the Atlantic 10 Conference and has made six NCAA tournament trips in its history, reaching the 2006 Final Four with memorable upsets of Michigan State, North Carolina and top-seeded Connecticut before losing to eventual national champion Florida in the national semifinals.

"I'm excited to get to know our former players, athletic staff, faculty, alumni and all of Mason Nation," English said in the release. "I also am delighted for everyone to meet my two daughters, Celine and Ari, my parents, and the rest of my family just up the road in Baltimore. I'm especially looking forward to meeting and forming bonds with our current and incoming student-athletes. I can't wait to get on the court with you and get started.

"The work has already begun to assert George Mason basketball's rightful place in the national landscape, consistently competing for Atlantic 10 championships and securing bids into the NCAA tournament."

English, a former All-Big 12 selection at Missouri who also competed for the NBA's Detroit Pistons during the 2012-13 season, is the 11th head coach in George Mason history.

Contact David Paschall at dpaschall@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6524.

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