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Amy Wright joins ASU women's basketball coaching staff


May 18, 2011

The Arizona State women's basketball program announced this week that Amy Wright has joined the Sun Devil coaching staff.

Wright comes to ASU following a successful three-year stint at Cleveland State - the final year as associate coach - where she was part of a coaching staff that helped lead the program to 59 wins, a conference tournament title, a pair of postseason berths and its first-ever postseason win.

"The history of the Arizona State women's basketball program speaks for itself," offered Wright, who played collegiately at Arkansas under Gary Blair, current head coach of 2011 NCAA champion Texas A&M. "I am eager to learn and contribute at the highest level. Charli, Joseph and Meg have done an outstanding job in making ASU one of the premier programs in the country. This is the opportunity of a lifetime for any aspiring educator and mentor of student-athletes."

At CSU Wright served as the program's recruiting coordinator in addition to assisting with game preparation, scouting and player development, specifically working with the squad's point guards.

"Amy Wright is one of the up-and-coming stars of college coaching," said Sun Devil coach Charli Turner Thorne. "We recruited her to our program because she has excelled as an athlete, coach, and recruiter at the highest level. Most importantly, Amy is a woman with passion, integrity, and commitment that is second to none. We are ecstatic to have her as part of our Sun Devil family."

In 2011 Cleveland State posted its second-highest win total in school history (21), tied the school record for most Horizon League wins (12) and earned a regional top seed in the Women's Basketball Invitational where it would go on to earn its first-ever postseason win. The Vikings also tied the second-best marks in program history for road wins (8) and consecutive wins (8).

One season earlier the Vikings advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the second time in school history after winning the Horizon League Tournament.

The Vikings initially set the school record for Horizon League wins (12) in 2009, Wright's first season at Cleveland State. The 2009 squad included the Horizon's League's Co-Player of the Year and Co-Defensive Player of the Year.

Prior to her appointment at Cleveland State, Wright spent one season as an assistant coach at Western Kentucky where she assisted in the day-to-day operations, including recruiting, scouting, game preparation and player development. She helped WKU earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Championship as the Lady Toppers won the Sun Belt Conference Championship.

In addition to her one season on the bench at WKU, Wright spent three seasons as an assistant coach at South Florida where she helped the Bulls amass 54 wins, including a 21-win campaign in 2004-05. USF made three trips to the postseason during her tenure there, earning an at-large berth to the NCAA Championship in 2006.

A 2002 graduate of Arkansas, Wright lettered for the Razorbacks from 1999-2002 and is the only point guard in school history to lead Arkansas to four straight postseason appearances, including the 1999 WNIT Championship and a berth in the WNIT semifinals in 2000.

She graduated as Arkansas' all-time leader in assists (717), setting the school record for assists in a season as a senior (205), leading the Razorbacks to the second round of the NCAA Championship.

An academic all-SEC selection as a junior (2001-02), Wright never missed a game, playing in 131 consecutive contests. Following her collegiate career, Wright participated in the WNBA Pre-Draft Camp and was drafted by the Detroit Shock in 2002.

A native of Williamsburg, Ind., and 1998 graduate of Northeastern High School, Wright graduated from Arkansas with a Bachelor of Science degree in marketing and management in 2002.

Wright's hire is pending additional paperwork completed by the ASU Human Resources Department.