Head Coach Brandon Giles enters his second season at Polk State. He follows in the footsteps of his father, Josh Giles, who coached Polk State basketball from 1987 to 1999. Giles’ love for basketball began as a young boy in a basketball family. He grew up playing in youth leagues in Auburndale and Winter Haven, Fla., where he developed diverse relationships that would continue into his adulthood. Giles graduated from Auburndale High School, where he was a starter for three years and was named the 2006 Polk County Player of the Year. At Western Carolina, Giles was a three-time First Team All-Southern Conference player. Today our staff caught up with Coach Giles to discuss his program and the upcoming season:
2019-2020 Polk State Signees:
2020-2021 Returners and Newcomers:
What are your expectations for Polk this coming year?
Much of this year will be about adjusting to the current circumstances as well an opportunity to grow. As I believe all adverse situations and change are opportunities to grow. I personally welcome the changes, there’s no other choice. As far as our student athletes go it will be imperative that we help them develop a mindset to overcome and stay positive. No college athlete imagines a year of college like this. But unfortunately it is what it is. The beauty of it with the guidelines in place we will still be able to practice and get better from an athletic standpoint. From an academic standpoint I believe student athletes will be able to lock in and focus more on their studies with classes being online. Recruiting is still up in the air as travel for 4 year universities may not be as available as it has been in the past. All in all I’m eager to get started.
How do you feel about NJCAA decision to move basketball to a spring session?
Its what needed to be done, I feel that it will allow our teams to better prepare for the season.
What players will you miss the most from last season? Who are you most excited to coach next year?
Coaching three top 50 JUCO players was a gift last year. I will miss all three however my 2019-20 team overall was a great group of guys who had fun together on and off the floor. I will miss being around each and everyone of them. I am excited to coach this entire team. I see things in every player that can contribute to winning, in the classroom, community and on the floor.
What changes do you expect to see in all of college basketball this coming season due to COVID-19? (Non-NJCAA how it effects 4-year schools recruiting calendar)
It will be imperative that we do a great job of filming all practices, scrimmages, and games. With the limited amount of travel 4 year schools will have, relationships and film with be extremely important during these times. Much of recruiting seems that it will be done through word of mouth.
Who would be your all time-starting 5? (Of the guys you coached at all schools)
Keon Clergeot – Auburndale HS
TK Smith – Polk State College
Warren Hall – Warner University (NAIA National Player of the year)
Clarence Jackson – Polk State
Bernat Vanaclocha – Polk State