Doane University Director of Athletics Matt Franzen has announced the selection of Sheronda Powell as Head Women’s Basketball Coach for the Tigers. Powell joins the Tigers after spending the past four seasons as an assistant coach for LeTourneau University in Texas.
Powell brings with her a wealth of knowledge as both a player and a coach. A two-time All-Big 10 selection and four-year letter winner at Michigan State, she has 14 years of collegiate coaching experience.
“Sheronda brings a wealth of experience to Doane both as a player and as a coach,” commented Franzen. “She has played at the highest level while coaching at the NCAA Division III and junior college ranks and we feel that her range will bring a positive impact to our program both in recruiting and in developing our young women.”
“From the beginning of this process, it was clear that Sheronda is a relational leader,” Franzen continued. “Most importantly, our players will know that her first concern is their well-being and that will lead to success, both on and off the court. All indications are that her players love to play for her. That will be a great starting point for the coming year and as she builds her program moving forward.”
Powell added, “I feel that Doane is a fantastic opportunity for me as a head coach because of the excellent academic reputation of the school, a nationally recognized liberal arts and sciences institution that is still ever growing and expanding. That is our commonality, that drive for continual “excellence” and growth that I believe we share. It is the desired theme that I was looking for as a head coach and the biggest thing that attracted me to Doane. Doane puts their best foot forward and this is what makes it a good move for me and my family.”
During her time at LeTourneau, the YellowJackets set a school record for wins in a single-season, advanced to the conference tournament for the third and fourth time in school history, and picked up an American Southwest Conference (ASC) post-season win for the first time.
Prior to LeTourneau, Powell spent five years in Missouri at Three Rivers College. The Lady Raiders won a pair of conference titles out-right while also sharing one title over five years. They added one regional runner-up finish.
Powell added stops at Macomb Community College where the team advanced to the regional tournament and a year at Concordia University (Mich.). She was able to get her start in coaching as a graduate assistant at Wayne State University (Mich.) before taking a head coaching position at Trinity Washington University (D.C.).
“Some of my short term goals are to establish a team identity or culture that is conducive to our team wanting to become stronger skill-wise, learn the process of winning, inspire them to pursue it with passion and then how to apply it to win games,” Powell said.
A decorated collegiate player, Powell saw her collegiate playing career cut short her senior season with an injury. Over four years, she started 82 of 93 games played while posting 966 points, 615 rebounds, and 49 blocked shots. Her .560 career field goal percentage still ranks in the Top 5 on the Michigan State record books. Powell was named the MSU Freshman Athlete of the Year and Most Improved Player for women’s basketball in addition to being named an alternate for the U.S. Olympic Sports Festival North team.
Following her college days, she set out to play professionally. She played on a pair of tours with Athletes in Action around the country and in Russia before playing professionally in China and Spain. Powell was also invited to WNBA tryouts with the Indiana Fever, Washington Mystics, and Detroit Shock.