WNBA Appoints Carolyn Jenkins Director of Player Personnel
Jenkins boasts a career in women’s basketball covering a 20-year span that includes four years as a player at the University of California, Berkeley, four years as an NCAA head coach, eight years as an NCAA assistant coach and, most recently, five years as an assistant coach with the Minnesota Lynx.
“As both a coach and player, Carolyn has long been involved with the growth of women’s basketball on many levels,” said Brown. “In joining the League office, she will work closely with our athletes on all player-related matters. We are thrilled to keep her in the WNBA family and are confident she will continue to help move the WNBA forward.”
Jenkins spent the past five years with the Lynx, where she worked as the top assistant coach on the staffs of both Suzie McConnell Serio and Don Zierden. In this role, she oversaw all scouting to evaluate talent for the draft as well as advance scouting during the WNBA season. She was also responsible for individual player workouts and conditioning, supervised video editing and assisted with trade scenarios. During her tenure, she helped guide the Lynx to their first-ever playoff appearances in 2003 and 2004.
Her collegiate coaching career includes three years as head coach at Sacramento State University (2000-03) as well as assistant coaching stints at Michigan State University (1996-2000) and Stanford University (1991-95). While at Michigan State, Jenkins spearheaded a recruiting class that was ranked among the top 25 in the country three consecutive seasons (1997-98 through 1999-00) and the Spartans won the Big Ten Conference championship during the 1996-97 campaign. During her time at Stanford, the team won three Pacific 10 Conference titles, and two of the Cardinal's recruiting classes were ranked in the top five in the nation. The Cardinal reached the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament each season, made two Final Four appearances and won an NCAA National Championship (1991-92).
In addition to her collegiate coaching, Jenkins has been involved with USA Basketball. She served as a scout and floor coach for the USA Basketball Senior National Team (1994) and a floor coach for the USA Basketball Pan American Team (1993).
Jenkins has also worked as a business analyst for Bay Area-based companies Hitachi Data Systems and United Defense. She is a member of the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association, Black Coaches & Administrators Association and National Strength & Conditioning Association.
A 1990 graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, Jenkins earned a degree in Economics and played four years for the Golden Bears while serving as co-captain during her senior year.
The WNBA will feature 14 teams in 2008, with the Eastern and Western Conferences comprised of seven teams each. Atlanta will join the Chicago Sky, Connecticut Sun, Detroit Shock, Indiana Fever, New York Liberty and Washington Mystics in the Eastern Conference, while the Houston Comets, Los Angeles Sparks, Minnesota Lynx, Phoenix Mercury, Sacramento Monarchs, San Antonio Silver Stars and Seattle Storm will continue to comprise the Western Conference.
The WNBA enjoyed one of its most successful seasons ever in 2007 with increased regular season attendance, a new postseason attendance record and Finals viewership on ESPN2 that was up 12 percent vs. 2006. Spectacular performances from the world’s best women’s basketball players highlighted the WNBA’s 11th season. The Storm’s Lauren Jackson tied a league record for points in a game (47) and also became the youngest player ever to reach 4,000 career points en route to earning league MVP honors, while the Mercury’s Diana Taurasi scored 30-or-more points per game a league-record 10 times. Led by 2007 All-Stars Taurasi, Cappie Pondexter and Penny Taylor, the Mercury capped the most exciting WNBA season ever by defeating the defending champion Detroit Shock in five games in the WNBA Finals.