Click here to Skip to main content
Univ of Arkansas Fort Smith - Basketball
Univ of Arkansas Fort Smith - Basketball mobile



Jim Boone was hired as UAFS head men's basketball coach on Tuesday, April 9.

He recently completed his seventh season as head men’s basketball coach at NCAA Division II Delta State University, guiding the Statesmen to a 19-12 overall record, a 12-8 Gulf South Conference record, the Gulf South Conference Tournament Championship and their 17th berth in the NCAA Division II National Tournament.

Boone, a native of Winfield, W.Va., has been a collegiate head coach for 33 seasons at the NCAA Division I and II levels. He finished this past season with 558 career wins, which ranks him 14th among active NCAA Division II coaches in wins and among NCAA Division II’s Top 40 All-Time Winningest Coaches.

Boone left tradition-rich Delta State as the third-winningest coach in program history with 128 wins.

In 2017-18, the Statesmen made their third consecutive trip to the GSC semifinals, making Delta State the only school to do that in each of the last three seasons, and in 2016-17, he led the Statesmen to their 16th NCAA Tournament appearance, where they advanced to the second round and closed the year with a 23-9 record. In 2013-14, Boone led the Statesmen to one of their best seasons in program history, as they captured the Gulf South Conference regular-season title and made a run to the NCAA Division II Sweet 16. Boone was named GSC Coach of the Year, marking the seventh time in his career he has captured such an honor.

In all, the Statesmen completed a two-year turnaround of a program that had won just six games the year before Boone took over in 2012-13. The 17-game improvement represents the best among NCAA Division II institutions over this period of time.

Prior to taking over as head coach of the Statesmen, Boone spent the 2011-12 season as head coach at West Virginia Wesleyan College, guiding the Bobcats to a school-record 22 wins at the NCAA Division II level and the program’s first ever NCAA Division II Regional Tournament Championship appearance.

Under Boone’s leadership, the Bobcats (22-9) defeated perennial NCAA Division II power Winston Salem State in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament before falling to West Liberty State.

Boone began his career as a standout player at West Virginia State College, where he was a four-year letterman. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Accounting (1981) and followed that with a master’s in Business Administration from the University of Kentucky (1982) with a concentration in Marketing.

His coaching career brought him back to his alma mater, spending three seasons as the head assistant coach and primary recruiter from 1982-85 at WVSC. Boone made the jump to NCAA DI basketball in 1986 as an assistant at Charleston Southern University, where the Buccaneers won the Big South Conference Championship.

That championship experience led Boone to California University of Pennsylvania as head coach. Over the next 10 years, Boone led California (Pa.) to unprecedented success, including a 228-71 record. During his time with the Vulcans, Boone’s 1992 squad posted 31 wins and was the number one team in the country. Boone also added two NCAA DII Final Four appearances, six regular season conference titles and six trips to the NCAA Tournament at the helm of the Vulcans.

Boone finished his time with a school-record 228 wins and a .763 win percentage. Boone was inducted into the California (Pa.) Hall of Fame in 2005.

From California (Pa.), Boone moved on to the challenge of rebuilding NCAA Division I Robert Morris University, eventually leading the Colonials to the NEC Championship game in 2000. In 1999 and 2000, he led RMU to a record of 25-13 in the NEC and produced two of the best seasons in Colonials history.

Boone left RMU after 2000 to take on the task of turning Eastern Michigan University into a competitive DI program.In five seasons at EMU, Boone quadrupled the program’s wins total and set several EMU attendance records.

He left EMU after the 2005 season for Tusculum College, a member of NCAA DII and the South Atlantic Conference. In 2009, the Pioneers won a school-record 20 games and the made its second-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament. He still holds the school record for conference wins over a four-year period at Tusculum.

During his career, Boone’s teams have won seven conference championships, four tournament titles and have made 11 postseason appearances. From 1990-96, his California teams recorded more than 20 victories for six consecutive years tallying an impressive 150-33 mark during that span. His 94-24 league record in the PSAC is still the best of any coach in that conference’s history. He was named PSAC Coach of the Year on three occasions (1988, 1992, 1996) and NCAA Region Coach Year twice (1992, 1996).

He is married to the former Stephanie VanVranken, and they are the proud parents of two sons, Jimmy and Joey.