Alvin Williamson is no stranger to Shawn Finney. The first-year Tulane assistant coach had a standout career as a point guard at the University of Tulsa during Finney's tenure as an assistant coach at Tulsa. Williamson arrives in New Orleans after two seasons as an assistant coach at Illinois State University.
"It is great to be at Tulane University," Williamson said. "First and foremost because it is a great academic school, but also because it is in one of the best basketball leagues in the country.
"I am also very excited to be back in with Shawn Finney," he continued. "I enjoyed playing for Coach Finney at Tulsa and I am glad to be a part of this system once again."
Williamson's duties at Illinois State encompassed a wide-range of duties, however, his coaching emphasis centered on the Redbird guard corps, as it will for the Green Wave. In his first year at Illinois State, he tutored Victor Williams and Tarise Bryson, the Missouri Valley Conference Freshman of the Year and Newcomer of the Year, respectively.
Prior to his stint at Illinois State, Williamson served as an assistant coach at Washington State. He was instrumental in the development of starting point guard Blake Pengelly, who as a freshman had 120 assists to rank No. 7 in the Pacific-10 Conference in 1997-98.
At Tulsa, Williamson was a key component of the Golden Hurricane teams which experienced some of the greatest success of the program, including back-to-back appearances in the NCAA Sweet Sixteen.
A native of Beggs, Okla., the former point guard finished No. 8 on Tulsa's all-time list for games played with 118. He was in the starting lineup for the final 63 games of his career. He also ranked in the top 10 all-time in assists (No. 7 with 277) and steals (No. 10 with 111). he averaged 7.2 points, 1.8 rebounds, and 2.3 assists during his career.
Tubby Smith, who was the head coach at Tulsa and is currently the head coach at Kentucky, raved about Williamson.
"Alvin was my first recruit as Tulsa and I have always considered him one of the smartest student-athletes I have ever coached," Smith said. "His ability to lead and outwork others as our captain was second to none. He is still the only player I have ever coached to win my individual workout award four years in a row."
In six NCAA Tournament games, Williamson committed only three turnovers while averaging 38 minutes per game. He started and dished out a career-high eight assists for the 1994 team that knocked UCLA out in the first round of the NCAA's.
After his collegiate career, he played for one season in the Continental Basketball Association for the Oklahoma City franchise before accepting the position to coach at Washington State.