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Chillious named assistant coach at UConn

xChillious picRaphael Chillious. COURTESY PHOTO  

Olney native Raphael Chillious has been named associate head coach of the University of Connecticut men’s basketball program.

Chillious, a Sherwood graduate, has served as an assistant coach at the University of Washington for seven of the past eight seasons and was promoted to associate head coach at UW last year. He replaces longtime UConn assistant Glenn Miller, who was recently let go.

“We are very fortunate to be able to add Raphael Chillious to our coaching staff,” said UConn head coach Kevin Ollie. “He is a high-level recruiter, but that is far from the only thing he brings to us. He has been involved in many aspects of the college game and has so much experience – he’s been a coach for a long time, he’s worked with Nike … I love his energy, his developmental skills and his knowledge of the game, offensively and defensively. Wherever he’s been, he’s created a culture that is a winning culture.”

The relationship between Chillious and Ollie dates back more than 20 years.

“We’ve known each other since I was in the CBA [Continental Basketball Association], and we’ve been friends ever since,” said Ollie. “He knows how to develop players. He’s a coach who can get players ready for the NBA, not only professionally on the court but professionally off the court as well. I’m grateful that the timing was right for us to work together on a professional level.”

During his tenure at Washington, Chillious helped lead the Huskies to back-to-back Pac-10 tournament championships in 2010 and 2011. He was also credited with helping develop future NBA guards Isaiah Thomas and Terrence Ross, among others.

Chillious spent five years as the head coach and co-athletic director at South Kent School in Connecticut. That’s where he first coached Thomas along with future NBA players Dorrell Wright, Andray Blatche and Dion Waiters. He later reconnected with Thomas at Washington.

“He’s meant a lot,” said Thomas, a two-time NBA All-Star with the Boston Celtics. “[He was] my prep school coach [and] my college coach. He’s someone I call family. He believed in me. From day one he believed in me. He’s worked with me. He’s done a lot for me, and like I said, he’s someone I call family. That’s my guy.”

In 2012, the Montgomery County product joined Jay Wright’s coaching staff at Villanova and had a role in recruiting Silver Spring native Josh Hart to the Pennsylvania campus.

During the 2012-2013 campaign, Chillious helped lead Villanova to an overall 20-14 record, including a 10-8 mark in league play. He coached Capital Classic alum JayVaughn Pinkston during that season, and the Wildcats also earned wins over three highly-ranked opponents including eventual national champion University of Louisville.

He rejoined the Washington staff in 2013 and became associate head coach last summer. He was largely responsible for luring DeMatha graduate and NBA prospect Markelle Fultz to the Washington campus but now looks forward to recruiting the Northeast and DMV area talent to UConn.

“It’s going to sound cliché,” said Chillious, “but the thing that made UConn attractive to me is UConn – one of the best brand names in college basketball, four national championships. Historically, UConn recruits high-level student-athletes and produces big-time pros.”

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