For Bryan basketball Chris Jones, it was tough to leave his players, but the opportunity to coach his daughter and watch her games made the decision easy.

Jones will coach the girls basketball team next year after several years leading the Viking boys. Jonathan Hines, who has been the boys basketball varsity assistant for six years, was promoted to head coach.

Jones, who has five children, previously coached his son, Dion, a Bryan graduate who lettered in basketball and cross country. His youngest daughter, Carmella, will be in eighth grade for the 2019-20 school year.

"I would never have been able to see her games had I continued to coach the boys," Jones said, citing the fact that boys and girls basketball teams play at opposite sites during district play. "It's a great opportunity to continue to coach and continue to be a Viking."

Jones has led the Vikings to the playoffs each of the past two years, including the Class 5A Region III tournament in 2018, Bryan's best finish since 2003. The Vikings went 22-11, advancing to the bi-district round of the Class 6A playoffs this season.

Jones was an assistant at Bryan from 2001-08 before serving as Rudder's first head coach from 2008-11. He then returned to Bryan as head coach.

The Lady Vikings went 3-22 under former head coach Beth Jesurun last year. Jesurun and her husband, former Bryan powerlifting/offensive line coach Robert Jesurun, recently left Bryan to pursue coaching opportunities at Huntsville. 

Jones acknowledged that there will be a learning curve to some aspects of the girls game but is ready for the challenge. He said he has yet to meet with any of the Lady Vikings.

"We're going to move forward with the program and build with what's already in place," he said.

Bryan also made several other head coaching hires. Chelsie Lemley was promoted from varsity assistant to head volleyball coach, replacing Ashley Davis, who left for the head coaching job at Hays Consolidated. Jordan Kazmierski was promoted to head tennis coach after longtime tennis coach Randy Stewart retired at the end of the season. Matt Hamilton was named head golf coach.

"We're glad that we have the people on staff that can move into key positions, that we can reward them for their loyalty, so we can show all our coaches that we believe in them," Bryan campus athletic coordinator Ross Rogers said.

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