Story Poster
Baylor Women's Basketball

BREAKING: WNBA COTY Nicki Collen hired as Baylor's WBB Coach

May 3, 2021

» Get 70% off an annual subscription! « 

WACO, Texas - Baylor University Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Mack Rhoades announced Monday that former Atlanta Dream Head Coach Nicki Collen would be named the fifth Head Coach in Baylor women’s basketball history. Collen will be formally introduced Wednesday at 2:30 p.m. at the Ferrell Center.

“Today is an exciting day for Baylor University and our women’s basketball program. Nicki is a passionate leader of young women and an elite basketball mind and teacher of the game,” said Rhoades. “She is a great mission fit who shares in our vision of Preparing Champions for Life by commanding excellence both on and off the court. Nicki’s professional experience will be invaluable to developing players for the next level. Her addition sustains our commitment to the women’s basketball program at the highest level. We welcome Nicki, her husband Tom and children, Connor, Reese and Logan, to the Baylor family.”

Collen comes to Baylor from the WNBA’s Atlanta franchise, where she spent the last three seasons at the helm for the Dream. Her rookie season in Atlanta resulted in a 23-11 season in 2018, where she earned WNBA Coach of the Year honors and helped the franchise to the WNBA Playoff Semifinals.

Prior to her arrival in Atlanta, she spent two seasons under head coach Curt Miller of the Connecticut Sun, helping the franchise improve from fifth in the East Division to second from 2016 to 2017, respectively.

“I am thrilled to be the head coach at Baylor University. I believe it is the top job in the country for women’s basketball,” said Collen. “I am excited to begin working with this extremely talented team and I am grateful for the unwavering support of President Livingstone and Mack Rhoades. The success of this program speaks for itself, and I will begin working today to ensure Baylor women’s basketball continues to be a program that excels at the highest levels.”

Collen’s collegiate coaching career spanned for nine seasons prior to her WNBA arrival. She spent two seasons as an assistant at Colorado State from 2000-2002, one season at Ball State from 2002-2003, one at Louisville from 2003-2004, three at Arkansas from 2011-2014 and two at Florida Gulf Coast from 2014-2016.

Her teams’ combined record in nine seasons as an NCAA Division I assistant was 214-74, good for a .743 win percentage. As an assistant, Collen guided four different squads to the NCAA Tournament, reaching the second round in three of those seasons.

She spent six of her nine seasons as an assistant under her husband, Tom Collen’s head-coaching tenures at Colorado State, Louisville and Arkansas. She also discipled under Tracy Roller at Ball State and Karl Smesko at Florida Gulf Coast, who has the third-highest active winning percentage in NCAA Division I. Collen helped the FGCU program to a 64-9 record and the school’s first NCAA Tournament win in her two-year tenure.

In her nine seasons at the collegiate level, Collen coached three All-Americans and saw three players selected in the WNBA Draft.

“We are excited to have Nicki lead our women’s basketball program, and we look forward to welcoming her into the Baylor Family,” said Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D. “I appreciate the work of Mack Rhoades and his team in identifying our next coach who understands our commitment to an elite program, aligns with Baylor’s Christian mission and appreciates how we prepare champions for life at our University. After visiting personally with Coach Collen, I can’t wait to see her and our student-athletes as they represent our great University both on the court and inside the classroom as well as throughout the Waco community.”

Collen’s collegiate playing career began at Purdue in 1993-94, when the Boilermakers made an NCAA Final Four run with a 29-5 overall record and a 16-2 mark in the Big Ten. Her sophomore season, Purdue made another deep run with an Elite Eight appearance to go with a 24-8 overall record. She transferred to Marquette, where she tallied 421 assists in her final two seasons, averaging 7.0 per game in her last 60 collegiate games. She helped the Golden Eagles to two-straight NCAA Tournament appearances in 1997 and 1998.

Nicki and her husband Tom have three children, Connor, Reese and Logan. 





Discussion from...

BREAKING: WNBA COTY Nicki Collen hired as Baylor's WBB Coach

19,008 Views | 74 Replies | Last: 4 mo ago by curtpenn
How long do you want to ignore this user?
OntheRecord said:

She's outspoken pro-LGBTQ. Livingstone is trying to checkmate the BOR into wokeness. She will succeed.

Why is it important for you to insert this controversial subject at such a time?

Please know:
The Bible is Truth.
Eternity is real.

It takes courage to stand for Truth.

God loves us all the same.
I try to follow His example.

But, Almighty God, your Creator-my Creator, has given us His Word for our good. Pls don't defy Him.

Love our neighbor as ourself; "red and yellow, black and white," all genders, all people; but, please, please don't ignore our Heavenly Father's Laws. He is the Lord our God. All-loving. All-just. All-knowing. All-powerful. All-merciful.

God bless you, "OntheRecord!" I'm just sayin' this as a Baylor brother.

Oh yeah...

God bless Coach Collen!

Sic 'em!
How long do you want to ignore this user?
How long do you want to ignore this user?
bunation said:

20 lb sledge meets nailhead.
How long do you want to ignore this user?
JustWinBears said: said:

There is no scientific evidence to date that one is born gay..

Whether born gay or not, the fact that you even put any energy into someone else's life is a sign that you aren't doing enough to focus on your own. Be humble, be Christian, and be a true fan of Baylor and realize that some of those players and coaches you root for are gay and shouldn't face any external pressure from the likes of anyone on that subject. I ask everyone that thinks that way to seriously ask what you gain by being closed minded? I can't imagine that it brings any value in life.

Anyway as for the topic at hand I'm excited now that I see the players are warming to the idea of the new coach. I feel this is a great decision, and while like many I would have been interested in seeing someone like Molly get a shot I think we got a great coach that with given the same tools KM had May be able to carry on and be highly competitive. My only concern will be recruiting as she's been in the WNBA and not on the recruiting trails so may not have as many connections. However I'm sure she can utilize those that are staying to maintain the current recruiting channels and it sounds like she's great at building relationships so could be a great recruiter.
I find it generally true that those who claim others are closed minded are equally as closed minded. That said, to the extent that we have examined an issue and arrived at a conclusion which may be contrary to the conclusion of others is not necessarily a bad thing. Good judgement is a positive.
subscribe Verify your student status
See Subscription Benefits
Trial only available to users who have never subscribed or participated in a previous trial.