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Ciara Gregory - Women's Basketball - University of Kentucky Athletics

CiaraGregory

BIO

Ciara Gregory, former Charlotte women’s basketball assistant coach, has been hired as the University of Kentucky women’s basketball director of recruiting operations and assistant coach, it was announced by head coach Kenny Brooks on Wednesday, May 1.

“I’m very grateful to be joining Coach Brooks and Big Blue Nation on this new journey,” Gregory said. “I can’t express how excited I am to be a part of this tremendous staff and rich tradition that is Kentucky basketball. I look forward to serving Coach Brooks, the staff and our student-athletes to the best of my ability. Let’s go, BBN!”

Gregory arrives in Lexington after serving five seasons at her alma mater Charlotte, first serving as a graduate manager in 2020-21 and 2021-22 before being promoted to assistant coach for the last three seasons from 2022-24.

During her time at Charlotte, she coached a pair of Kentucky alumnae, including KeKe McKinney in 2021-22 and Kameron Roach in 2021-22 and 2022-23.

In Gregory’s half-a-decade at Charlotte, she primarily worked with the guards.

Last season, Charlotte’s first season in the American Athletic Conference, Gregory supported a team that went 16-15 overall and 9-9 in its new league. That season, she helped coach All-AAC First Team selection, Dazia Lawrence, who put up 18.1 points per game, which marked the fourth most in the league in 2023-24. Under Gregory’s guidance, Lawrence reached Charlotte’s 1,000-point club in a double-overtime triumph against Temple.

In 2022-23, Gregory helped lead Charlotte guards Jada McMillian and Lawrence en route to earning Conference USA First Team honors. McMillian led the league with 151 assists, averaging 5.0 per game, while also adding 12.3 points per game on 45 percent shooting. Meanwhile, Lawrence ranked fourth in the league in scoring (16.9), field-goal percentage (.439) and free-throw percentage (.817) that season. Lawrence also scored a career-high 41 points against Louisiana Tech, the second-most points scored in the history of Halton Arena.

Lawrence also played for the USA Women’s Basketball team that participated at the 2023 FIBA 3×3 U23 World Cup in Lublin, Poland.

In Gregory’s first season as an assistant coach at Charlotte in 2021-22, she helped guide the 49ers to a pair of C-USA titles, both the regular season and tournament. Octavia Jett-Wilson became C-USA’s Player of the Year and the C-USA Tournament’s Most Valuable Player after leading the Niners to those pair of championships and a berth back into the NCAA Tournament. The fifth-year senior started all 32 games, averaging just under 20 points per game, and hitting not one, but two buzzer-beating shots in an eventual quadruple overtime win over Rice. Jett-Wilson finished off her stellar career as the program’s all-time leader in games played (143), games started (123) and minutes (4,157).

Gregory, a Jeannette, Pennsylvania, native, spent the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons as a graduate manager at Charlotte. In that role, she assisted with scouting and film breakdown, practices and travel. During her two years as a graduate manager, Charlotte remained one of the top teams in C-USA, advancing in the league tournament both years. The Niners posted a 31-21 record between the two seasons, and they also returned to the 2021 Women’s National Invitation Tournament.

Gregory also played for Charlotte for four seasons (2014-17).

One of the most prolific players in 49ers history, Gregory concluded her time wearing green and white as the school’s all-time leader in three categories. She held program marks for career 3-pointers made (235) and attempted (695), while establishing another with her nine makes from behind the arc at FIU on Feb. 4, 2017. Her nine triples were one of seven career performances that she drained at least six. She also was one of 26 players in school history to reach 1,000 points at the time she graduated, ending her storied career with 1,031.

Gregory earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in American studies from Charlotte in 2017. There, she added a master’s degree in arts and liberal studies with a focus on coaching, leadership and sports in 2021.

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