Former WNBA player Wanisha Smith added to Temple WBB staff

Temple University women’s basketball head coach Diane Richardson announced the addition of former WNBA player Wanisha Smith to her coaching staff as an assistant coach.

Smith comes to Temple after a brief hiatus from coaching to pursue opportunities outside of sports. In the basketball world, she most recently served as an assistant coach at Duke during the 2019-2020 season.

“Coach Smith brings a wealth of knowledge as a High School All-American, Division I athlete, and professional career in the WNBA,” Richardson said. “Her skill development process for our athletes will contribute immediately. We welcome Coach Smith back to our staff. She was part of our staff that helped to win the first ever conference championship at Towson.”

Prior to her time with the Blue Devils, Smith spent time on Coach Richardson’s coaching staff at Towson from 2017-2019. During her time with the program, she helped Coach Richardson lead the Tigers to their first-ever NCAA tournament appearance in program history. Before Towson, Smith was an assistant with the Longwood University women’s basketball program for seven years. While at Longwood, Smith held a wide range of duties, including guard coach, recruiting, community service coordinator, and travel/facility liaison.”I would like to thank Coach Rich and Temple University for this amazing opportunity!! Coach Rich is a proven winner,” Smith said. “The way she pours in to these players lives both on and off the court is second to none. I’m extremely excited about adding to the growth of this program.”

Before entering coaching, Smith was a highly successful player. The former point guard was drafted 27th overall in the 2008 WNBA draft by the New York Liberty before being traded to the Detroit Shock. Smith played her college ball at Duke, where she set the program record for assists by a freshman (154) and was four-time ACC Rookie of the Week. Over the course of her four years in Durham, Blue Devils tallied a 119-15 record while Smith scored 1,256 career points and passed for 496 career assists. Her assists place her at 5th all-time in Duke women’s basketball history. Smith was named a team captain and started for Duke in the 2006 National Title game.

Smith attended high school at Riverdale Baptist in Upper Marlboro, Maryland where she played for Coach Richardson. She won a host of accolades while at Riverdale Baptist, including McDonald’s All-American, WBCA All-American, Maryland Gatorade Player of the Year, Parade All-American, USA Basketball Gold Medalist (USA Basketball Youth Developmental Festival), 2004 Washington Post Player of the Year, and 2003 and 2004 National Christian league Player of the Year.

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