Former Colorado State star Becky Hammon named NBA assistant coach
SAN ANTONIO -- The San Antonio Spurs announced Tuesday that former Colorado State women’s basketball player Becky Hammon has been hired as an assistant coach with the NBA organization.
Hammon was a driving force during CSU’s most successful season in program history in 1998-99. The Rams finished 33-3, advancing to the Sweet 16 in the NCAA Tournament. The team was ranked as high No. 4 in national polls that season.
Former teammate and current director of operations on the women’s basketball staff, Kim (Austin) Mbadinga was thrilled with Hammon’s opportunity. “I’m so excited and not surprised to hear about the opportunity for my friend and former teammate Becky Hammon. She’s always been an inspiration, and a leader on and off the court, and I think she’ll be a great fit with the Spurs’ organization. I know the same qualities that made her a great player will help her succeed as a coach.”
The best player to ever wear a Rams’ uniform (1995-99), Hammon was a three-time All-American as well as the Rams first consensus All-American. A South Dakota native, Hammon was a recipient of the Francis Pomeroy Naismith Award for the best player in the nation under the height of 5-8.
To this day, she holds the all-time scoring record in the WAC, regardless of gender, with 2,740 career points. She was a three-time WAC Player of the Year, a four-time WAC first-team all-conference selection, the WAC Freshman of the Year, a 15-time WAC Player of the Week and the first freshman o be named the WAC tournament most valuable player.
Hammon’s jersey is the only number to be retired from the women’s basketball program. Her No. 25 hangs next to former men’s basketball All-American Bill Green (24) and fellow volleyball All-American Sherri Danielson (12) in the Moby rafters.
Hammon announced her retirement from the WNBA's San Antonio Stars last month after 16 stellar years in the league. She currently ranks seventh all-time in points (5,809), fourth in assists (1,687) and sixth in games played (445). She was named to the WNBA’s Top 15 Players of All-Time list in 2011.
Hammon becomes the first full-time female assistant coach in NBA history. Lisa Boyer was a volunteer assistant on the Cleveland Cavaliers’ staff in 2001-02 and Natalie Nakase served as the LA Clippers’ assistant video coordinator during Summer League.