As the director of basketball operations, Watson has helped lay the foundation for the rejuvenation of the Dartmouth men’s basketball program under Cormier. Last year the Big Green had three freshmen who earned a total of 10 Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors. With another strong recruiting class entering this fall, Watson will further help the development of the current players and have direct responsibility in identifying and securing new talent for the team.
“Losing someone as talented a recruiter and coach as Joey Gallo is never easy for a program,” Cormier said. “But we shouldn’t skip a beat with Jordan, who has displayed an excellent work ethic and strong knowledge of the game as the director of operations these last two years. Even though he has not been on the recruiting trail the past couple of years, he is an experienced and proven recruiter of the Midwest and the East from his time at Barton. I expect him to quickly get back in the swing of things on the recruiting trail.”
The Barton to which Cormier refers is Barton (Kan.) Community College, where Watson was an assistant coach for three years, the last of which he spent as the associate head coach prior to coming to Hanover. The 2009 Cougar squad went 28-5 and was ranked as high as seventh in the NJCAA as the team won its first Kansas Jayhawk West Conference Championship in seven years. During his three years at Barton, the team had a record of 67-28. One of his players, Nyika Williams, was the 2008-09 KJCCC MVP, then went on to play at the University of the Pacific, and now plays professionally overseas.
“It has been my privilege to work with the basketball program at Dartmouth, a place that is loaded with extraordinary people,” said Watson. “I am excited and thankful for this new opportunity, and will continue to do all I can to bring success to this program both on and off the court.”
A 2005 graduate of Augustana (Ill.) College, Watson began his collegiate career at the University of Evansville, where he led the Purple Aces and the Missouri Valley Conference in three-point shooting as a freshman. He then transferred to Augustana and played for two years before an injury cut short his senior season. But he took the injury and turned it into an opportunity by serving the Vikings as a student assistant, helping the coaches in practices and during games.
From Augustana, Watson went to Illinois State where he earned his master’s degree in sports management and served as the volunteer graduate assistant for the Redbirds. While working on his degree the following year, he interned with the Memphis Grizzlies as a basketball operations assistant for head coach Mike Fratello. Watson was involved in the daily operations of the team, plus helped the coaching staff with scouting reports and assisted in individual workouts. He also assisted the Director of Player Personnel, Vice President of Basketball Operations and the video coordinator.