Associate Head Coach
When Vic Schaefer started assembling what he labels his “A” team, the first crucial piece of that squad was Johnnie Harris, who enters her third season in Starkville as the program’s associate head coach.
Harris’ reputation as one of the nation’s top recruiters showed as the staff’s first two recruiting classes have rated among the best in program history.
Harris, who works with the Bulldogs’ post players, helped develop Martha Alwal into one of the nation’s top centers. Under her guidance, Alwal earned First Team All-SEC honors and SEC Co-Defensive Player of the Year accolades a year after she was named to the all-league second team and winner of the Gillom Trophy as Mississippi’s top women’s college basketball player. In two seasons working with Harris, Alwal has become MSU’s all-time blocks leader while topping the league in the category the last two seasons.
Harris also serves as State’s special teams coach, coordinating the in-bounds, sideline and free-throw plays, something she specialized in working alongside Schaefer for five seasons on the Texas A&M bench.
Vic Schaefer added another up-and-coming young coach and an additional championship pedigree to his Mississippi State women’s basketball staff with the addition of Dionnah Jackson as an assistant coach.
Jackson, a former All-American at Oklahoma, comes to Starkville following a two-year stint on the staff at George Mason, where she worked with the Patriots’ offense and guards.
In her two seasons at George Mason, Jackson tutored Taylor Brown to the team’s scoring title both years. Last season she claimed second team all-conference honors after averaging 21.4 ppg and setting a school single-season record with 643 points.
She broke into the coaching ranks at Southeast Missouri State where she helped Kara Wright to the Ohio Valley Conference All-Newcomer Team, the program’s first all-conference honor since 2008-09, and Bianca Beck to an overseas professional contract in her three years at the school.
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