Former Eisenhower and Central Washington University basketball standout Drew Harris has been named the new top assistant to Central head coach Greg Sparling.

"Drew has always wanted to be a college coach and this is a great opportunity for him," Sparling said. "His experience as a successful point guard and coach in the GNAC [Great Northwest Athletic Conference] should pay immediate dividends for our program."

Harris, 24, played for Central during its illustrious 2010-11 campaign, in which the Wildcats posted a 26-4 overall record, won the GNAC regular-season and tournament titles, and earned the number one seed for the NCAA Division II West Region Tournament. Individually, Harris, who started all 30 games, averaged 9.0 points and 4.2 assists per game. He received second-team all-GNAC recognition and was also an academic all-conference honoree.

This will be the second season on the Central bench for Harris. Last season, he worked with the guards, conducted individual work with team members and scouted opponents. Sparling indicated Harris will now also assume more recruiting responsibilities.

"It's also nice to have a former [CWU] student-athlete with ties to the Yakima Valley [on staff]," Sparling added. Harris played his prep basketball at Eisenhower High School in Yakima, where he starred for the Cadets.

Harris said, "It's an honor to be able to coach at Central with its rich history in basketball and athletics. Ellensburg is a great and supportive community, and to be able to coach somewhere where you've played is an added bonus.

"I hope to be able to lend my experience as a successful student-athlete to our players here in the future. I feel that I will have opportunities to be able to help the guys both on and off the court as they balance their athletics and academics."

CWU has qualified for the GNAC Tournament each of the past three years, winning the inaugural conference tournament title during Harris' senior season in the Crimson and Black.

Harris replaces former CWU associate head coach GE Coleman, who was hired last month as head coach at the University of Hawai'i at Hilo.