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Magee native, Carlos Funchess, who is the basketball coach at Southern University, led his girls to the SWAC championship! The Lady Jags defeated Jackson State 45-41. Carlos has been named the SWAC Women’s Basketball Coach of the Year.
Carlos’ team, Southern University, meets the Mississippi State Bulldogs in the first round of the 2019 Division 1 Women’s Basketball Championship at Humphrey Coliseum in Starkville.
Carlos graduated from Magee High School, Co-Lin Community College and ULM. In 1992, Funchess received a bachelor’s degree in Health and Human Performance from Louisiana-Monroe. He was a two-time All-Southland Conference selection as a player at Northeastern Louisiana (ULM). He also won the 1991 college basketball slam dunk contest. Known as the “Doctor of Dunk,” Carlos has made Magee, Mississippi proud.
Funchess was selected in the Continental Basketball Association draft in the third round by Oklahoma City, U.S. Basketball League in Atlanta, and the World Basketball League in Saskatchewan. For the next three years, Funchess played for the Miami Heat, Global Basketball Association, U.S. Basketball League in Atlanta, Continental Basketball League in Sioux Falls, and played some overseas in Venezuela.
In 2007, Funchess was inducted into the ULM Sports Hall of Fame.
During the previous 13 seasons, Funchess served as assistant coach under former head coach Sandy Pugh at Southern University, where he worked exclusively with developing the Jaguars post players, including All-SWAC performers Frederika Lewis, Freda Allen, Jasmine Jefferson and Briana Green.
Since his arrival to Baton Rouge in 2005, Funchess has been instrumental in guiding the women’s basketball program at Southern University to five SWAC regular season and three SWAC Tournament titles.
Funchess is also known as a tireless recruiter, canvassing much of the Southeast and Texas for hidden talent which has helped Southern become a perennial SWAC title contender.
He is married to the former Sondia Mills of Monroe and has two daughters, Tynee and Chelsea. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs Charles Funchess and brother to Chaucer Funchess of Magee.
I thought this was such an interesting story about Carlos, so I just had to share!
Carlos Funchess was the reason Mike Vining quit allowing fruit in the locker room.
The then-Northeast Louisiana Indians squared off against Duke, the eventual national champion, in the first round of the 1991 NCAA Tournament. Funchess punctuated the first half with a 360 dunk and the Blue Devils went into the half nursing a five-point lead.
Funchess helped himself to a piece of fruit at halftime and that was it. Duke regrouped and cruised to a 102-73 win while Funchess battled an upset stomach.
“That was the end of that,” said Vining, who coached ULM to 401 wins and seven NCAA Tournament appearances from 1981-2005.
Carlos will lead his Lady Jags Friday night, March 22, 2019, in the first round of tournament play at MSU’s Humphrey’s Stadium.
Best of luck to Magee’s Carlos Funchess
(Friday night, March 15th, My son Dickey was in Birmingham with his son Preston and a friend Chris Miciello and his son Cross. Late that night, Dickey and the group were in the elevator. The guys started talking and someone asked Carlos where he was from. When Carlos said Magee, MS, Dickey almost fainted! Of course they immediately started up a conversation “I am too and do you know.” Carlos’ team had just won the SWAC Championship. Preston and Cross were excited to run into Carlos again on Saturday and got a great picture! Cross on left and Preston on right)