Former NBA player Mike Bibby hired as Hillcrest Prep head coach

Photo: Darryl Webb/Special for the Republic

Phoenix basketball powerhouse Hillcrest Prep has added to its star power by hiring a former NBA point guard to lead its team.

Mike Bibby, who played 14 years in the NBA and spent his most productive years with the Sacramento Kings, has been hired as the program’s head coach.

Bibby was most recently the head coach of Shadow Mountain High in Phoenix. His tenure at that school ended in February, after a teacher accused him of sexual abuse. In April, police told the Arizona Republic the investigation “did not reveal probable cause to recommend charges.”

Howard Thomas, the former Hillcrest head coach who was promoted to director and vice president of the school this offseason, said Bibby was one of two candidates he had in mind for the job.

“He was vetted by a member of our board who spoke with chief of police here locally before the hire,” Thomas said.

Bibby was accused of grabbing a female teacher by the waist and pulling her into his car while on school property at Shadow Mountain in 2017, according to a restraining order obtained by the Arizona Republic. He allegedly rubbed his genitals against her and groped her.

When police declined to press charges against Bibby and the vetting had been completed, Bibby’s basketball history made it a “really easy” decision, Thomas said.

“I believe this is a great opportunity for both parties as we continue to grow the Hillcrest brand,” Thomas said.

Bibby has extensive basketball ties in Arizona. He played at Shadow Mountain High and starred at the University of Arizona, winning a national championship in 1997. He returned to Shadow Mountain as coach after his NBA career, and the team won five state championships in his six years at the school.

Bibby takes over a Hillcrest Prep program that is among the most talented in the nation. Kyree Walker was a member of the ALL-USA Third Team last season, and Dalen Terry is a 6-foot-6 point guard ranked as a high four-star on the 247Sports composite.

Newcomers include Class of 2021 Chosen 25 players Michael Foster Jr. and Keon Edwards, four-star 2020 small forward Puff Johnson and 2022 five-star power forward Shadraque Nganga.

More Boys Basketball