Jackson County has found its next girls basketball coach.
Cherokee Bluff assistant coach Christi Thomas has been hired to take the helm of the Jackson County girls program.
"I am really excited to go on this new journey and for it to be as a Jackson County Panther," she said. "I am happy to be back in Red and Black and excited to build on to the foundation that has already been laid at Jackson County. I am looking forward to building up strong young women who will become leaders and role models in their community. I'm just really looking forward to growing women’s basketball in Jackson County."
Thomas was a standout player for Buford and played college basketball for the University of Georgia where she was named SEC Freshman of the Year under legendary coach Andy Landers. She also was the 12th overall pick in the WNBA draft. She takes over a 7-22 Jackson County program led by former coach Julie McCutcheon.
Thomas played professionally for 11 seasons, 7 of those were in the WNBA for the Los Angeles Sparks (5 years), Minnesota Lynx (1 year) and the Chicago Sky (1 years).
Most recently she spent two seasons as a Flowery Branch girls assistant on Courtney Newton-Gonzalez staff, and the last two assisting Lindsay Justice at Cherokee Bluff.
"Of course it was difficult to leave Cherokee Bluff," she said. "They are literally my family. My brother will graduate from there next year, my mom coaches at the middle school, and I have so many other wonderful relationships with that community. It is a wonderful place and loved my time there, this was just an opportunity I couldn’t pass up."