Yolanda Griffith Comes to UAlbany Women’s Basketball as Assistant Coach
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ALBANY, N.Y. – Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame member, two-time gold medalist and 11-year WNBA veteran Yolanda Griffith has joined the UAlbany women’s basketball team as an assistant coach starting in the 2016-17 season.
“I’m honored to be a part of the Great Dane family, and I’m looking forward to continuing the winning tradition that's been started,” said Griffith. “There is plenty of work to be done, but myself, the coaches and the players are going to work tirelessly to keep it going.”
“Yolanda Griffith is a women’s basketball icon; decorated as one of the greatest players of all time, her on-court coaching presence is felt immediately,” said UAlbany head coach Joanna Bernabei-McNamee. “Coach Yo’s infectious personality and ability to develop players sets her apart. Behind the scenes, she is a proven recruiter: her positive energy and strong work ethic will make it easy for her to connect and build bonds with both our current UAlbany players and our high level recruits. I am thrilled to welcome Coach Yo to our UAlbany women’s basketball family!”
Griffith formerly was an assistant coach at UMass from 2014-16, Lafayette for the 2013-14 season and Dartmouth from 2011-13. She also served as an adjunct assistant coach with the Indiana Fever in the WNBA in 2009.
Griffith had an 11-year career in the WNBA, including being a seven-time All-Star and the league’s MVP in 1999 with the Sacramento Monarchs. The 2nd overall pick in 1999 was a member of the league’s all-decade team and led the Monarchs to the 2005 WNBA title, being named Finals MVP. In her career, Griffith shot 50.6% from the floor, finishing with 4,238 points, 2,444 rebounds, 529 steals, 453 assists and 323 blocks. In 2011, she was voted as one of the top-15 players of all-time in WNBA history. She also played professionally in China, Germany, Italy, Russia and South Korea.
Griffith also was a member of the U.S. National Team in the 2000 Olympics in Sydney and the 2004 Olympics in Athens, helping the United States to the gold medal in each, combining to go a perfect 16-0 against its international competition.
In 2014, Griffith was elected to the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in her first year of eligibility.
She formerly was a member of the Women’s Developmental National Team Committee for USA Basketball, evaluating athletes, coaches and policies as the athlete representative. She helped review hundreds of athletes for 35 spots for trails for USA Basketball, including the U16 and U17 Developmental Teams.