Marion's Grant Gibbs moving up in pro basketball coaching ranks

DES MOINES, Iowa (KCRG) - Marion native Grant Gibbs made a lot of memories on the basketball court as a player from winning a state title with Linn-Mar to playing in the NCAA Tournament with Creighton.

Gibbs did play three years professionally overseas in the Netherlands and Germany, but injuries derailed his playing career. However, he's found a new path as a coach.

"I didn't exactly know it was something I was going to fall into," Gibbs said.

He quickly got a job as an assistant coach for the Oklahoma City Blue, the G-League affiliate of the Oklahoma City Thunder. He served that role for two seasons before being named the head coach back in August.

"I'm obviously extremely grateful for the opportunity in that the organization views me in a way to be able to take over this role," he said. "At first, you get all your congrats, and then you realize that this is a job where you have to influence the players you're working with and the staff."

Even with all the responsibilities he has as a head coach, Gibbs learned from some of the best coaches as a player, including Creighton head coach Greg McDermott and his former high school coach at Linn-Mar Chris Robertson. He says he does stay in contact with them asking for advice.

"You're constantly trying to get out ahead of problems that could be an issue," he said.

Gibbs is hoping to prove why the organization put so much trust into naming him the head coach.

"This league, this is a developmental league for everyone," Gibbs said. "It's high-level players that you're working with every day and high-level staff."