Benson: Meet Tina Langley, the New Dawg in the Pac
Posted on April 10, 2021
ANear weeks of radio silence after Jody Wynn’s March 15 sacking, news broke Monday in Seattle that the University of Washington had hired new women’s basketball head coach, Tina Langley.
Langley comes to Seattle after six years as head coach of Rice University in Conference USA, where Langley transformed the Owls during his six seasons in Houston.
In 2015-16, its first season, the team finished 9-22 and advanced to the quarterfinals of their conference tournament. In 2020-21, the Owls finished 23-4, won the WNIT and were Conference USA West Division champions.
In the last three seasons under Langley’s management, the Owls have amassed a 44-4 conference record.
Before landing the job at Rice, Tina Langley was an assistant for seven seasons under Brenda Frese, Md., In the Big 10, the last five as an associate head coach. The Terrapins have reached the Final Four twice with Langley on staff, and in his final season at College Park, the Terps were 18-0 in the league.
Langley is a former student of the University of West Alabama, where she obtained a degree in special education; She also holds a Master of Arts in Recreation and Recreation from the University of Toledo and a Master of Arts in Community Counseling from the University of Alabama.
With extensive experience east of the Mississippi, Husky fans might wonder: Why are the University of Washington and Tina Langley suitable?
For starters, Langley has experience building a winner at a middle school in Rice. In six seasons, the Owls have gone from a basement conference team to competing for the CUSA Championships.
In addition, Langley has extensive leadership experience at a high performing Power 5 conference school in Maryland; she was Brenda Frese’s associate head coach for five seasons and helped guide Maryland to two Final Fours.
The deficit in Tina Langley’s resume is tied to connections with the Pacific Northwest and the West Coast.
Langley said in her introductory press conference Wednesday that working for a school like Maryland allows her to recruit nationally, and that she has relationships with coaches in the Pacific Northwest, even so she will certainly have to establish and develop more relationships in the greater Seattle area.
Langley stressed that recruiting is all about relationships and she hopes people can feel her passion and love for the community as she settles in UW.
Another worry among seasoned UW fans could be that Alabama native Tina Langley will help rebuild Washington and leave Seattle when a job closer to home opens.
Head coach roles in Auburn and Oklahoma were also vacant during the search in Washington, and there were whispers that Langley was a runner-up for the Tigers and Sooners, as well as the Huskies. Auburn and Oklahoma were likely in a financial position to outperform an offer Washington made to Langley.
Langley spoke on several occasions about the athletic and academic opportunities available at the University of Washington on Wednesday, indicating that Tina Langley takes academics seriously for her student-athletes, especially after a stint at Rice, which is also a stellar academic institution. .
What was clear watching and listening to Tina Langley at her press conference was her deep respect for Seattle and the UW community, her commitment to the student-athletes on the roster right now, and her willingness to learn and d ‘be adaptable.
She spoke of the rich tradition of the women’s basketball program in Washington and her humility to be able to build on the past as she eagerly awaits what will happen in Seattle.
Without a doubt, Langley exudes a positivity that has been lacking in the women’s basketball program at UW for the past four years.
As a native of Alabama, she was asked if her family was Roll Tide or War Eagle growing up. Langley’s joke was revealing.
“Well,” she said, “I’m more Go Dawgs!”
If that doesn’t make everyone dressed in purple and gold stand up and clap, I don’t know what will. Tina Langley is a perfect fit for Montlake, and with that enthusiasm and radiant positivity, I’m confident wins will follow.