May 24, 2013
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Northwestern assistant coach Tennille Adams was named the head coach at Howard University, it was announced today. Adams spent the last five seasons at Northwestern as an assistant coach on head coach Joe McKeown’s staff.
“I am really proud of Coach Adams and also really excited for her,” McKeown said. “Having spent 19 years at George Washington, I have great respect for Howard University and think they just hired one of the top young coaches in our sport. She did a tremendous job in helping us rebound Northwestern and will be sorely missed by our players and staff.”
"I am extremely humbled and honored for this opportunity," Adams said. "I would like to thank my new Director of Athletics Louis "Skip" Perkins and the Bison family for believing in my ability to lead the women's basketball program here at Howard University. It is a privilege to represent an institution with such rich tradition and history as well as return to the MEAC."
In her five seasons in Evanston alongside McKeown, Adams has helped transformed the culture of the women's basketball program. The Wildcats achieved a program first during the 2012-13 season as Maggie Lyon was crowned the Big Ten Freshman of the Year by the conference coaches and media. Lyon was the first Wildcat to receive the conference's rookie of the year award and one of four NU players to achieve All-Big Ten status along with Kendall Hackney, Dannielle Diamant and Karly Roser.
The Wildcats entered the 2011-12 campaign following the best back-to-back seasons in nearly 15 years. Combined, the 2009-10 and 2010-11 campaigns yielded 37 victories, two postseason appearances and milestone wins over nationally-renown Ohio State, LSU and DePaul.
Northwestern's improvement from 2008-09 (7-23) to 2009-10 (18-15) was tied for the 10th best turnaround in the nation and ranked fourth among BCS schools. The success yielded NU's first postseason appearance in 13 years and a ticket to the WNIT, which led to two victories and a trip to the event's round of 16.
Adams is familiar with the D.C. area as she coached at American University prior to her arrival in Evanston. She was responsible for all aspects of recruiting, was involved in the development of post players and the point person for academic affairs and external relations within the basketball program.
Adams, a standout at the University of Arkansas, began her coaching career in 2004 as an assistant at Lon Morris Junior College in Jacksonville, Texas, before taking a similar position at North Carolina A&T State. She spent two years with the Aggies in Greensboro, N.C., before making the move to Washington D.C.
As a student-athlete at Arkansas, Adams was a member of the 1997-1998 Final Four team and the 1998-99 WNIT Championship team. On an individual level, Adams was ranked in the top five post players in the nation and as one of the top 50 seniors by Blue Star.
Adams will inherit a Howard program whose recent success includes two invitations to the WNIT (2011 and 2012), the first-ever Women's Basketball Invitational (WBI) appearance (2013), and two 20+ wins seasons.
Be the first to know what's going on with the 'Cats -- Follow @NU_Sports on Twitter, become a fan of Northwestern Athletics on Facebook, subscribe to the NU Sports Express e-newsletter and sign up to receive promotional text alerts for the latest news, schedule updates and video and to interact with NU. For more information on following specific Northwestern teams online, visit our Social Media page!