Brooks Williams named ULM Head Women’s Basketball Coach
MONROE, La. – Brooks Williams, the all-time winningest head coach in McNeese State University history who spent the last three seasons as an assistant coach at the University of Alabama, has been named head women’s basketball coach at ULM, according to an announcement made Tuesday, April 9 by Interim Athletics Director Scott McDonald. Williams’ hiring is pending approval by the Board of Supervisors for the University of Louisiana System.
Williams will be formally introduced as ULM head women’s basketball coach at a press conference, scheduled for Thursday, April 11 at 1 p.m. on the sixth floor of the University Library.
“First, we were overwhelmed by the national interest in our open position,” McDonald said. “Second, Brooks Williams’ credentials, both on and off the court, immediately grabbed our attention. Brooks has a proven track record as a head coach, not only in terms of winning games but also taking her teams into postseason play. Her teams not only performed at a high level on the court but also accomplished great things in the classroom and community.
“We’re excited to add Brooks to the ULM Family, and I know she can’t wait to hit the ground running.”
“What an incredible feeling to be back in my home state!” Williams said. “There’s no place like Louisiana, and it all starts with the culture and the people. Because of the tremendous commitment Dr. (Nick) Bruno and Scott McDonald are making to the ULM Women’s Basketball program, I have no doubt we can create something special. I’m so thankful for this opportunity and can’t wait to begin cultivating our Warhawk championship culture.”
During her three-year tenure at Alabama, she worked primarily with the perimeter players while assisting with recruiting and scouting.
In 2017-18, Williams helped the Crimson Tide reach the 20-win milestone for the second consecutive year and advance to the Women’s National Invitation Tournament quarterfinals. Since her arrival, Alabama has beaten Tennessee four-straight times, including its first victory in Knoxville during the 2017-18 season.
In Williams’ first year in Tuscaloosa, the Tide collected 22 wins, marking the most games an Alabama team had won since the 1997-98 season. The Tide went deep into the postseason, advancing to the quarterfinals of the Southeastern Conference Tournament and the Women’s NIT, both of which were first in over a decade.
Prior to arriving at the Capstone, Williams spent nine years as head coach at McNeese State University. Williams, the 2011 Southland Conference Coach of the Year and the Cowgirls’ all-time winningest coach with 161 victories, took over a program that had not produced a winning record in nearly 10 years and guided McNeese to six consecutive postseason appearances, including back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances (2011 and 2012). She led the Cowgirls to four 20-win seasons over her last six years, including one regular-season Southland Conference Championship (2011) and consecutive SLC Tournament titles (2011 and 2012).
Under her watch, McNeese had 18 All-Southland Conference selections, eight all-tournament team honorees, including a pair of SLC Tournament MVPs and one SLC Newcomer of the Year. Her student-athletes were equally successful in the classroom, garnering four Southland Conference Student-Athlete of the Year awards and 10 All-Academic Team selections. In addition, Williams’ squads had a 100-percent graduation rate.
Williams was instrumental in growing the women’s basketball fan base and made it a priority to get out in the Lake Charles community. Since 2010, home game attendance more than tripled, and on Dec. 16, 2011, the Cowgirls had a Top-10 crowd on hand to watch their game against LSU. Williams and her teams participated in a variety of community service activities, including Habitat for Humanity, Special Olympics, American Cancer Society Walk, Toys for Tots and Ethel Precht Breast Cancer Walk.
In 2014, senior Netanya Jones was one of only 10 student-athletes to receive national recognition on the Allstate/WBCA Good Works Team. Williams also has been personally recognized for her efforts in the community as she received the President’s Award for outstanding community service from McNeese in 2013 and also was recognized by Toys for Tots Southwest Louisiana in 2010.
Prior to taking over at McNeese in 2007, Williams served as assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Southern Miss for three seasons. Other coaching stops include Memphis (2003-04), St. Thomas More High School (2003), Little Rock (2000-03), AAU Mississippi Pride (2000) and AAU Acadiana Stars (1995-99).
Williams graduated from Mississippi State University in 2000 with a degree from the College of Education where she majored in sport communication. She was a member of the women’s basketball program; however, her Lady Bulldog career was cut short due to injuries.
The Jennings, Louisiana, native is married to Tyler Williams, and the couple has one son, Griffin.
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