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Pearl River men’s basketball adds valuable assistant to coaching staff

By Dylan Dunaway

PRCC Sports Information

POPLARVILLE, Miss. — Pearl River men’s basketball coach Chris Oney has added a valuable piece to his coaching staff with the addition of assistant coach Tanner McGill.

McGill has an abundance of experience after spending six seasons on the North Alabama coaching staff as a manager and a graduate assistant coach.

“First and foremost, I think that Tanner is a very genuine person,” Oney said. “It was something that jumped out at me during the interview process. He’s touched every facet of the game at the Division I level. He started as a manager and worked his way all the way up. Those guys are always hard working and appreciative of their opportunities.”

Pearl River’s production made McGill’s decision easy.

“Pearl River was a good fit for me because of the success that the program has had over the years,” he said. “The way that coach Oney and his staff have always produced high level, high-quality guys was impressive and it was something that I wanted to be part of.”

McGill feels excited to work for the former NJCAA Coach of the Year.

“It’s going to be an amazing opportunity working with him,” McGill said. “Not only from every aspect of basketball but just as a person that I want to be. I want to emulate what coach Oney has done in my own career and try to learn and do everything that I can to help him be the best head coach in the country.”

Former Pearl River standout and current North Alabama Lion C.J. Brim played an essential part in McGill ending up at Pearl River.

“He listed three references for me to call, but one of the first calls that I made was to C.J.,” Oney said. “I asked him if he was a ‘Pearl River guy’ and when C.J. gave his stamp of approval, I decided to start moving forward with it.”

“C.J. Brim is a top-notch player and person,” McGill said. “Getting to coach at a place that I coached a player from just shows the top of guys that coach Oney recruits. C.J. is a winner in all aspects of life. It was an easy fit once I talked to C.J. By the type of person and type of player that he is, I knew that Pearl River was the place for me.”

McGill graduated with a bachelor’s degree from North Alabama in 2019 and is pursuing a master’s degree in sports management from UNA as well.