Mississippi Valley tabs Walker as new women's hoops coach
ITTA BENA, Miss. – Mississippi Valley State University's Director of Athletics Dianthia Ford-Kee announced Ashley Walker as the fifth head women's basketball coach on May 5, 2017. Walker believes her track record for recruiting student-athletes and discipline philosophy that focuses on mental and physical growth through teaching will continue the upward momentum of the women's basketball program. She brings 12 years of collegiate coaching experience.
“I am elated Coach Walker accepted the opportunity to lead our women's basketball team. Her competitive drive and ability to transition that drive to the young ladies will make for exciting basketball at the Valley,” stated Ford-Kee, “She is vested in developing champions of character through sports on and off the playing surface. Her get it done attitude and strategic approach to the game will lead our program to be a force to reckoned with sooner rather than later in conference as well as non-conference play.”
Walker comes to Mississippi Valley State after serving two years at Wiley College (May 2015). While at Wiley, she tallied an overall record of 39-17. Walker has the experience to propel the hungry Devilettes team forward. She was responsible for the day-to-day decision making for her program at Wiley. In addition to the day-to-day operations, Walker oversaw the budget, served as a liaison for Champions of Character with the N.A.I.A and spearheaded the program's fundraising efforts.
Before taking on the head role at Wiley, Walker spent three seasons as an assistant at South Carolina State University in Orangeburg, South Carolina. While at South Carolina State, she helped the team to an impressive 20-9 record in her first season and coached two-time All-MEAC performer Kourtney Williams, who finished her career as the seventh all-time leading scorer in South Carolina State women's basketball history. During her tenure, South Carolina State also record victories over Clemson University and several teams from the Big South, SoCon, Atlantic South and Ohio Valley Conferences.
Prior to SC State, Walker was an assistant coach at Angelina College in Lufkin, Texas for seven seasons (2005-2012). During her time, the team compiled a record of 135-81. Walker, a Bryan, Texas native, played two years at Angelina College after leaving Bryan High School as a highly sought-after recruit. In the 1999-2000 season, she was part of the team that broke the program record for wins in a season as her team finished 24-7. Her success at the junior-college level led to a scholarship at Texas Wesleyan University, which was in the Red River Athletic Conference where she played for another two seasons before receiving her Bachelor of Science in exercise of sports studies in 2005. Upon graduating, Walker returned to Angelina College as an assistant to head coach Bryan Coleman.
During her time at there, the team set a school-record 26 wins in the 2009-10 season, and she helped coach three National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) All-Americans, two Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) All-Americans and two freshmen of the year. Additionally, the 2006-07 team earned Academic All-American honors. Several of Walker's Lady Roadrunner players went on to play Division I basketball.
Walker is the daughter of Thomas and Dorothy Walker, who still reside in Bryan, Texas. Walker has one sister, Amanda, who lives in Austin, Texas.
Coach Walker will be introduced to the public and the media on May 17, 2017 at 12:00 pm in the Science and Technology Auditorium.