Sept. 2, 1999
Notre Dame, Ind. — Former University of Notre Dame women’s basketball standout Coquese Washington, currently a member of the Women’s National Basketball Association’s (WNBA) New York Liberty has been named assistant women’s basketball coach at the school. She replaces Letitia Bowen who held the position for three years, but will remain at the University as an administrative assistant to the women’s basketball program.
Washington, whose Liberty team is currently in the final of the WNBA Championship, will join the program following the conclusion of the season.
A native of Flint, Mich., Washington played for the Irish under head coach Muffet McGraw from 1989-93 and was a member of Notre Dame’s first-ever NCAA tournament team in 1992. Holder of school records for steals (307) and steals average (2.7), she made 89 starts in the 113 games she played throughout her career and finished with career averages of 8.4 points, 3.4 rebounds and 4.9 assists. Washington also stands third on the third on the career assist list with 554. In addition, she scored 948 points and grabbed 383 rebounds in four seasons.
The 5-6 guard led Notre Dame in steals all four years and was the team’s assist leader from her sophomore year through her senior season.
As a senior captain during the 1992-93 campaign she averaged 10.0 points, 3.9 rebounds, 4.4 assists and 2.9 steals and was a second team Midwestern Collegiate Conference honoree. As a freshman, she was named to the MCC All-Newcomer Team. During her four seasons, Notre Dame compiled a 75-44 record.
For the past three years, the 28-year old Washington has played professionally in both the now defunct American Basketball League and WNBA. In the inaugural season (1996-97) of the ABL, she played for the Portland Power where she was the team’s starting point guard averaging 3.4 ppg., 3.0 aspg. and 1.7 rpg. She has been a member of the New York Liberty for both the 1998 and 1999 campaigns and is one of the team’s top backcourt players.
In addition, she played for both the New England and Hoosier All-Star teams before her stints in Portland and New York.
Washington holds two degrees from Notre Dame. She received her undergraduate degree in history from the College of Arts and Letters in 1992 nearly one year earlier than her scheduled graduation, and earned a juris doctorate in 1997.
“We are excited to have someone of Coquese’s extensive background join our staff,” McGraw says. “Her professional playing experience with the WNBA will provide invaluable knowledge to our players. Coquese’s success as a student-athlete at Notre Dame will also a great asset to us in the recruiting process. We are elated that she will be joining our staff.”