HICKORY, N.C. — The Catawba Valley Community College men's basketball program announces the addition of former Red Hawk standout Jalen Cannady to its coaching staff.
"I am very excited to have Jalen Cannady join us as an assistant coach," said CVCC head men's basketball coach Bryan Garmroth. "He is very eager and excited to start coaching. Having a former player join us as an assistant coach is exciting."
Cannady finished his Catawba Valley career averaging 10.3 points, 6.6 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 0.9 steals and 0.4 blocks per game. In 49 games played, he recorded 506 points, 322 rebounds, 56 assists, 44 steals and 19 blocks.
Earlier this summer, Cannady found out about the assistant coach opening at CVCC through Garmroth and reached out to his former coach about the position.
"I've always had a great relationship with coach Garmroth," Cannady said. "I enjoyed my time here at CVCC so I wanted to come back and help the young men that are coming along and teach them some of the things that coach Garmroth and (former CVCC assistant) coach (Julian) Larry taught me."
After graduating from CVCC, Cannady completed his collegiate career at North Carolina Wesleyan College, where he played in 16 games for the Battling Bishops, averaging 7.1 points and 3.5 rebounds per game.
A wrist injury during his senior season ended Cannady's collegiate playing career, but the unfortunate ailment allowed him to get his first taste of coaching.
Cannady served as a student assistant coach at Wesleyan during the 2015-16 season — his final with the Battling Bishops, and he was immediately drawn to the coaching profession.
"I just loved it," Cannady said. "I wanted to pursue playing, but things didn't go the way I wanted them to. I just wanted to be around the game. I love the game so much. I wanted to get be around the game as much as possible."
Seven months following his graduation from Wesleyan, Cannady attempted to play professionally for the Five Star Sports organization in Shenzen, China, but he ended up continuing his coaching career overseas instead with the organization during the 2017 season.
With a couple of seasons of coaching experience under his belt, Cannady now joins a CVCC men's basketball program that is coming off one of its best seasons ever. The Red Hawks finished their 2018-19 campaign with a 22-9 record overall and a 13-7 mark in Region 10 play.
"I know where we've come from when coach Garmroth first started," Cannady said. "I was one of the first recruits for coach Garmroth his first year here. To see how the program has grown and how it's gotten to the level it is at now is just great."
Coaching is in Cannady's bloodlines. His uncle Kenya Hunter, who has coaching experience at Nebraska, Georgetown, Xavier, Duquesne and N.C. State, is an assistant men's basketball coach at UConn.
Cannady lives in Concord with his son, Cohen. He is the son of Rhonda and Michael Cannady Jr. and the brother of Jalliyah, Javian, Jamiyah and Janiyah Cannady.