JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) – The 2022 East Tennessee State Game Time Tour was a real hit with the fans this spring, as man Bucs supporters were able to interact and chat with some of the school’s head coaches.

Few carried a bigger smile throughout the weeks than women’s basketball head coach, Simon Harris.

He explained Thursday that the turnout for the events has been encouraging, but not surprising. The passion and knowledge brought to each stop by fans of the Blue and Gold continued to impress Harris.

With the tour in the rear view mirror, the focus now shifts to preparing his new and returning players for the upcoming season. It will be Harris’ second year at helm, after last year’s inaugural campaign finished with a 6-22 record.

However, four of those wins came in the final eight regular season games. It’s the type of burst, Harris believes, that can propel his more experienced team into this winter.

“It’s really cool and a lot of the meetings you have and the dealings we’ve had while they’re away from campus after graduation – a lot of it was [about] the progression that we did make and how proud I am of them for kind of figuring it out, staying with the process, trying to improve and get better – which we did,” Harris said.

That improvement and commitment to hard work will not only benefit the squad in the short term, but the whole program in the long term, as well.

That’s very big, it’s what we can talk about with the young women coming in, the young women returning – and also the one’s we’re recruiting for the future,” he said.