UCLA promotes Tyus Edney to fill coaching staff vacancy

The biggest cheers for UCLA’s basketball coaching staff during pregame introductions next season may very well be for an assistant.

Former Bruins star Tyus Edney has been promoted from his role as director of operations to fill the vacancy created by the departure of assistant coach Ed Schilling, who left to join Archie Miller’s new staff at Indiana. Edney’s mad full-court dash with 4.8 seconds left for a buzzer-beating layup against Missouri in the 1995 NCAA tournament remains one of the most iconic plays in school history. UCLA went on to win the national title that year.

“I’m appreciative of the opportunity to share my knowledge and experience with the program that has given me so much,” Edney said in a statement released by the school. “I will do everything that I can to help us perform at the highest level.”

Edney, 44, had served as director of operations for seven seasons after the end of a playing career that included parts of four seasons in the NBA and more than a decade competing internationally.

“He will be a tremendous asset to our program as an assistant coach,” UCLA Coach Steve Alford said in a statement, “and we’re very confident that he’s going to significantly impact our team in every aspect.”

Several Bruins players said last season they considered Edney an inspiration and often sought him out for advice. Point guard Lonzo Ball even re-created Edney’s buzzer-beating play for a video posted on Twitter.

“Any time you have somebody this close to your program that won a national championship,” shooting guard Bryce Alford said during the season, “you’ve got to pick his brain.”

Kory Barnett, who had served as the program’s director of player development and scouting, will replace Edney as the director of operations.

ben.bolch@latimes.com

Twitter: @latbbolch

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