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Men's basketball coachKelley Newton, a former Wyandotte High School and University of Oklahoma basketball standout, has been named the men's basketball coach at Kansas CIty Kansas Community College. (KCKCC photo)
Men's basketball coach
Former Wyandotte High School and University of Oklahoma standout Kelley Newton is the new men’s basketball coach at Kansas City Kansas Community College.
The women’s basketball coach at Neosho County Community College the last three seasons, Newton will begin his new duties immediately. Newton is also the owner and head coach of the Kansas Lady Nuggets, a women’s semipro team playing in the WBCBL.
“With his background in this area, we feel Kelley will be very effective as a recruiter,” said Blue Devil athletic director Tony Tompkins. “He’s a very good communicator who I believe will provide the coaching skills and the discipline needed to build a very successful program.”
“This is a great opportunity for a lot of different reasons,” said Newton, 35. “Having been raised in KCK, it’s a chance to get back to the community I love. I feel and a lot of people feel this is a place ready to experience major success and I would like to give back to the community in a way I haven’t been able to in the past. Growing up in Kansas City, I think KCKCC now has the name recognition it has not had in the past. Not only do you hear about the college, you drive around and see its presence with the new athletic facilities and the new Technical Education Centers.”
In his three seasons at Neosho County, his players maintained a combined grade point average 3.00 and 12 of 15 players earned scholarships at four-year colleges. In addition, he turned a fund-raising debt into a positive balance.
An all-state high school quarterback at Wyandotte, Newton played on three state qualifying basketball teams. He began his collegiate career at Neosho County, where as a sophomore in 1997-1998, he averaged 18 points, seven rebounds and four assists to lead the Panthers to the Jayhawk East championship.
His play earned a scholarship to Oklahoma. After sitting out the 1998-1999 season with a torn ACL, Newton played on two NCAA teams that qualified for the NCAA tournament. The Big 12 tournament champion as a senior, the Sooners were 53-14 in his two seasons.
Newton played one year of professional basketball with the Oklahoma Storm of the USBL where he was coached by NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. He began his coaching career as an assistant for one year at Midland College (Texas) and two years at the University of North Alabama.
He left coaching in 2005 to be general manager of Cartridge World in Norman, Okla., before returning to the coaching field in 2008-2009 with the Oklahoma City On Point Lady Hoopers of the Women’s Blue Chip Basketball League. Between the Lady Hoopers and Kansas Nuggets, he’s taken teams to the national tournament four times. In addition, he officiated high school and college basketball games for six years and serves as Midwest region director of the WBCBL which runs from May through August.
Married, he and his wife, Kelly, have two daughters, Kyla, 7, and Kendall, 16 months.
A total of 230 applications were received for the position.
- Story, photo from KCKCC.