Barnes named assistant MBB coach

MARSHALL-Southwest Minnesota State University head men’s basketball coach Brad Bigler announced today that Tramel Barnes has been named the new assistant men’s basketball coach at SMSU.

Barnes recently completed his first season as an assistant coach at SMSU in 2013-14 and helped lead the Mustangs to a 19-win season and an appearance in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Tournament semifinals.

“As we went through the process, Tramel stepped up as the perfect fit for our program,” Bigler said. “Timing, sometimes, is everything. We have seven incoming freshman and two redshirt freshmen on this year’s roster. It was important for me to have a guy who knows our system. Tramel is also a guy who played at SMSU and understands the type of guys we want to bring in the program.”

Barnes completed a five-year collegiate playing career in 2012-13, including spending the last three at SMSU. He started his career at Northern State University (2008-10), appearing in 48 games with eight starts in two seasons before transferring to SMSU in 2010.

“Even though he is a young guy he has a great presence about him and will earn the respect of the players,” Bigler said. “He has a bright future in this business and we hope to develop him in the years to come. We are happy to keep in the Mustang family.”

Following a redshirt season in 2010-11, Barnes played in 60 career games for the Mustangs scoring 351 points and grabbing 231 rebounds, while dishing out 159 assists. He finished his SMSU career shooting 82.8 percent from the free throw line ranking sixth in program history. As a senior in 2012-13, he averaged 6.0 points and 4.1 rebounds per game and ranked second on the squad with 85 assists. He was a member of SMSU’s 2011-12 squad that won the NSIC tournament and advanced to the NCAA tournament.

“I would like to say thank you to SMSU Director of Athletics Chris Hmielewski and coach Brad Bigler for the opportunity to continue coaching at SMSU,” Barnes said. “I am thrilled to continue working with coach Bigler, the SMSU athletic department and our Mustang men’s basketball program. SMSU and the Marshall community has been a very special place to me over the last four years and I am excited for the opportunity to continue building on the tradition of the Mustang men’s basketball program.”

Barnes, a native of Watson, Minn., is a 2013 graduate of SMSU with a degree in sports management. He is completing his master’s degree at SMSU in physical education and leadership.