Nikki McCray Mississippi State
Courtesy of Old Dominion

Last week, Vic Schaefer left the Mississippi State women’s basketball program to take the head coaching position at Texas. Since then, we have kept you up to date on potential candidates to replace him.

Sources tell The Ball Out, the Bulldogs will be naming Nikki McCray-Penson as its next head coach. McCray-Penson will be coming to Mississippi State after coaching at Old Dominion for the past three seasons. She was named  Conference USA Coach of the Year this past season and finished this season with a 24-6 record.

Louisville head coach Jeff Walz was the other finalist for the job.

Update (4/11/20):

Mississippi State has officially hired McCray-Penson as their next head coach. We first reported the hire Thursday night.

It was officially announced this morning:

Here’s what GoVols 247 Columnist Maria M. Cornelius had to say about the hire:

“Nikki is everything that is right about women’s college basketball. She is committed, dedicated, principled and fierce. Her resume speaks for itself – Lady Vol, WNBA, Olympian – and what she did as a head coach at ODU in just three seasons was tremendous. Nikki’s name had to have been on Mississippi State’s shortlist immediately. Nikki is from Collierville, Tennessee, which is just 150 miles from Starkville, so she knows the lay of the land already and what it takes to compete and recruit in the SEC.

“The branches of Pat Summitt’s coaching tree are blooming all over the SEC. Summitt said McCray played with a ‘sense of urgency.’ That’s quite a compliment from one of the most demanding coaches of all time. I just want to add my voice to the chorus of those applauding this decision by John Cohen to make Nikki the next head coach at Mississippi State.”



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