What They're Saying About Coach Oliver

“Dez is one of the most thorough, well prepared coaches I’ve ever encountered. He never stops working, and he’s been preparing for this opportunity his entire career.
“All of the success we’ve had at Tennessee, the culture we’ve established—it doesn’t happen without Dez Oliver. He played as big a role as anyone. ETSU should be very excited about the future of its basketball program.”

Rick Barnes, Tennessee Men's Basketball Head Coach

"Becoming a successful head coach is not a matter of capability for Dez... It’s simply matter of opportunity. The leadership, character and expertise has always been there. He checks every box...as a man, as a professional and as a leader. Any program, institution or community that is fortunate enough to have Dez and his family will be better for it."

Rob Lanier, Georgia State Men's Basketball Head Coach

"Desmond is a phenomenal coach and a superb mentor, role model & molder of young men. I don’t think there is anyone more prepared to help build trust and bring the community together to support the university and the students. He’s committed to equity, diversity and inclusion and will create space and place for conversation and dialogue."

Tyvi Small, Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Engagement at the University of Tennessee

"Desmond is prepared and ready to be a head coach. He's ready to lead his own program. Desmond has excellent relationships in the basketball community that would benefit any program."

Jon Gilbert, East Carolina Athletic Director

"Coach Oliver was the first person to teach me what it takes to be a pro! He taught me what hard work really is. Waking up in the morning when I didn't want to work on my game, Thank You!"

Dawan Robinson, University of Rhode Island (2002-06)

"If it wasn't for Coach Oliver, I don't know if I would be here right now."

Grant Williams, Boston Celtics Forward & Former Tennessee Vol (2016-19)