Darris Nichols is proving that hard work can pay off in all of the right ways as he continues to climb the ranks in his career as an assistant coach.
On Friday, Nichols confirmed to WVI that he will join new University of Florida head coach Mike White as an assistant with the Gators.
The news comes less than a year after Nichols accepted a position at Louisiana Tech ahead of White’s fourth season as the Bulldogs’ head coach.
“I think he does it the right way,” Nichols said of White at the time. “He’s all about the players and doing the right things and he’s just somebody at this point in my coaching career that I want to be a part of and learn from.”
White, 38, is scheduled to be introduced at Florida on Monday, but the school announced the hire on Thursday following the departure of former head coach Billy Donovan to the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder.
“I have an incredible amount of respect for the University of Florida and I am so excited to be a Gator,” White said in a statement. “Not only is Florida home for me, but the tradition and success that the Gators have built make this an incredible opportunity.”
Louisiana Tech fell to Temple in the NIT quarterfinal this past season after finishing with a 27-9 record overall, 15-3 in Conference USA.
Nichols’ rabid ascension from an assistant at Northern Kentucky to Wofford, Louisiana Tech and now Florida shows how he is viewed and respected in coaching circles. In an interview with wvillustrated.com, he spoke about the advice he took from WVU head coach Bob Huggins as he began his career after playing.
“The main thing Huggs told me when I got into coaching was to be yourself,” Nichols recalled. “I’m just myself. I’m similar to the way I played.”
Evidently it’s paying off for the Mountaineer.