Cy Alexander became the ninth North Carolina A&T men's basketball coach in the modern era on April 20, 2012. Alexander brought with him a wealth of experience in constructing a championship program within the MEAC.
That experience was evident in his first March as the Aggies head coach. Alexander led the Aggies to their first MEAC tournament title in 18 years when he coached the Aggies to a win over Morgan State in the MEAC title game in March of 2013. The win was Alexander’s 31st MEAC tournament win, making him the all-time leader in MEAC tournament wins.
Alexander also led the A&T men’s basketball program to its first-ever NCAA tournament win as the Aggies defeated Liberty 73-72. The win over Liberty gave the Aggies a 20-win season in 2012-13, their first 20-win season in 25 years. Alexander picked up his sixth MEAC championship as a head coach.
Before coming to A&T, Alexander led S.C. State to seven MEAC tournament title games, winning five of those contest over a 16-year span. Before Alexander arrived in Orangeburg, the Bulldogs had captured only one MEAC regular-season title, and they reached just one MEAC tournament final. In addition, the school was coming off of its ninth straight losing season.
When his tenure ended at S.C. State, Alexander had won nearly 60 percent of his games and more than 70 percent of his conference games. Alexander will be asked to restore the Aggies tradition of winning MEAC titles. The Aggies own a league-leading 15 MEAC tournament titles, but have not been crowned champions since 1995.
Alexander's time in the MEAC began in 1976. He spent 11 seasons as an assistant coach at Howard University under A.B. Williamson. In 1987, he was named the head coach at S.C. State. He was able to compile a 277-202 record overall and a 191-79 record in the MEAC. Alexander's teams at S.C. State finished first or second 13 times.
In year one at S.C. State, he was 16-13. By year two, the Bulldogs finished 25-8, broke the school record for wins and advanced to the NCAA tournament after winning the school's first MEAC tournament title. During the same season, the Bulldogs gained national prominence by winning the San Juan Shootout. One of the victories in the shootout included a win over No. 11 Villanova. Alexander was now on his way to piecing together what became one of the most successful coaching runs in MEAC history.
Alexander's efforts helped him win three MEAC Coach of the Year honors while at S.C. State, including the 2003 honor for leading the Bulldogs to their fifth MEAC crown. His S.C. State teams received the prestigious American Sports Wire Black College National Championship three times (1996, '98, '00).
After the '03 season, Alexander became the head men's basketball coach at Tennessee State University. Alexander spent six seasons with the Tigers. Alexander led TSU to the 2008 OVC championship game, the school's first in 10 years. Alexander is a Winston-Salem, N.C., native, who has a 370-327 career record over 23 seasons. His other coaching acknowledgements include being named Palmetto State Coach of the Year by the Greenville Basketball Club. He has also been inducted into the Catawba and S.C. State Hall of Fames. In 1996, he was named American Sports Wire National Coach of the Year.
Alexander has served as a member of the Black Coaches Association and the National Association of Basketball Coaches. He is also a member of several organizations, including Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity.
Alexander has a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology from Catawba College. He earned a master's degree in education from Howard University. He and his lovely wife Cecelia have one child, Joi Alexander. Coach Alexander also has a grandson, Cameron, and his 92-year old mother Margaret, lives in Winston-Salem, N.C.