UF men's basketball hires Kevin Hovde as assistant coach

Graham Hall
Gator Sports

Florida men's basketball coach Todd Golden announced the program's first assistant coach Tuesday as the newly hired head coach builds a staff that could be complete within the next week. 

UF announced the hiring of Kevin Hovde as an assistant coach. Hovde comes to Gainesville from the University of Richmond, his alma mater, the Atlantic 10 Tournament champion that made it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament after an upset of No. 5 seed Iowa.

Golden and Hovde have plenty of history together, having worked seven seasons together between San Francisco and Columbia University, with Hovde serving two seasons as associate head coach at San Francisco before heading to Richmond in May 2021.

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Kevin Hovde

“Kevin is extremely sharp and has a great understanding of what we want to do, not only from a basketball standpoint but in the big picture of how we want this program to run,” Golden said in a statement. “He has one of the best offensive minds we have in the college game.  We’ve obviously had the opportunity to work alongside each other for several years at multiple stops, and I’m really glad we have the chance to add another chapter to our collaboration here at Florida.”

Prior to San Francisco, Hovde was on the staff at Columbia for five seasons, including two alongside Golden. He initially joined the Lions' program as the director of basketball operations prior to the 2011-12 season. Hovde worked his way up to assistant coaching the following season.

In Hovde's final season at Columbia, the Lions finished 25-10 – a school-record for wins – and won the postseason Tournament.

“I couldn’t be more excited to join Florida’s elite men’s basketball program and become a part of the University of Florida and Gator Nation,” Hovde said. “It was going to take a special opportunity for me to leave my alma mater, and this is that opportunity. I am incredibly thankful to be a part of this staff. My family and I are thrilled to be reunited with Coach Golden and his family in Gainesville!”

The Athletic reported another former assistant who took the path from Columbia to San Francisco is expected to join Golden and Hovde at UF. Jonathan Safir worked at Columbia from 2016-18 before heading to San Francisco as an assistant coach.

According to multiple reports, the Gators are also in the process of hiring an assistant coach with SEC experience. Korey McCray served as an assistant coach for seven seasons at Mississippi State on former coach Ben Howland's staff. Before that, McCray coached the 2014 season at LSU after spending two seasons at UCLA.