Clark returns to women's basketball as a coach under Jim Davis
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. --- Former Golden Eagle Allison Clark is set to return to her alma mater in a coaching capacity for the women's basketball program, as announced by head coach Jim Davis. At Tech, she will focus heavily on recruiting, as well as working with the guards on the court. She will also be primarily responsible for acting as a liaison for the players and academics.
"It's a win-win situation to have one of our own come back to the place that she loves," Davis said of Clark's return. "It's really a tribute to [former coach] Bill Worrell. They were OVC champions every year that she played. She has the mind-set of what it takes to be a champion.
"She's a tremendous leader, a great role model and a wonderful lady with high character," Davis continued. "She has a great reputation and is very well known in the area. She's very well thought of in the coaching sorority and well-respected."
A native of Shelbyville, Tenn., Clark returns to Tech bringing with her 13 years of coaching experience at a variety of levels.
"This is awesome, not many people get to come back to where they played, and I'm excited for the opportunity that Coach Davis has given me," Clark said of her appointment. "I had a wonderful experience here; it's a great school and I received a great education that really prepared me for life and my goals.
"I'm excited to get back into the community and to be back in Cookeville. I'm looking forward to getting the team back and letting everyone see who the girls are. When I was here we had outstanding support from the community, and I'd like to see it at its peak again."
Prior to spending the past two seasons coaching at Shelbyville Central High School, she spent five seasons (2005-2010) coaching at Middle Tennessee State under Rick Insell, her former high school coach.
Over the course of those five seasons, Clark helped guide the Lady Raiders to five Sun Belt Conference Tournament Championship titles, four appearances in the NCAA tournament and three regular-season titles. She coached multiple players to numerous Sun Belt Conference awards, including two Sun Belt Players of the Year, two SBC Defensive Players of the Year, and two SBC Tournament Most Outstanding Players, as well as eight All-Sun Belt performers over five years.
She was also a part of the staff the led MTSU back into the national spotlight, when the team rose to as high as No. 16 in the 2006-07 season in both the Associated Press and USA Today polls after winning 27 games in a row. This squad claimed the program's second consecutive SBC regular season crown after posting a perfect 18-0 record.
An accomplished recruiter, Clark helped Middle Tennessee claim a Top-10 ranked recruiting class in 2006, which included both the Tennessee and Kentucky Gatorade Players of the Year, and a top-25 ranked class in 2009. She helped to develop four All-Americans at MTSU, three of whom continued on to play professional basketball in the WNBA.
Over the course of her career at MTSU, the program went 125-39 overall and 76-10 in Sun Belt Conference action. The Lady Raiders were 65-7 on their home floor and 42-1 at home in conference play.
Prior to her stint at MTSU, Clark was a graduate assistant at the University of Arkansas under Susie Gardner and earned her master's degree in Sports Management. She coached one season at Tech in 2002 before making the move to the SEC program in Fayetteville.
As a student-athlete, Clark played her freshman season at the University of North Texas, earning Big West Conference All-Freshman honors and setting the freshman record for 3-pointers in a season.
She then transferred to Tennessee Tech, where she was a three-year letterwinner for coach Bill Worrell. After sitting out the 1998-99 season due to NCAA regulations, Clark helped Tech win or share the regular season OVC championship all four years she was in Cookeville.
Clark was a first-team All-OVC selection as a junior and was named to the OVC All-Tournament team as a sophomore and junior. A member of the program's NCAA Tournament Team in 2000, she set the single-season and career marks for 3-pointers and was given the Ed Steitz Award as the Best 3-point Shooter in the Nation by the National Basketball Hall of Fame. Clark also made OVC Academic Honor Roll two times during her career, and landed on Tech's Athletic Director's honor roll all eight semesters of her career.
During her time at Tech, Clark led her team in accuracy from behind the arc in all three seasons that she lettered under Worrell. She tallied a percentage of .406 from downtown, shooting 92-for-225 over three seasons at Tech.
In high school, Clark was an All-American for Insell at Shelbyville Central. She was a member of the 1995 state championship team and was named Midstate Player of the Year by the Tennessean as a senior. Shelbyville won three straight District and Region titles and finished runner-up at the state tournament during Clark's senior year.
She was also a member of an AAU national championship team in 1996 and served as the head coach of the Tennessee Ladies AAU squad in 1999.
Always the dedicated professional, Clark was a keynote speaker at the Women's Professional Luncheon in Shelbyville in 2009 and a Nike WBCA Assistant Coaches' Round table presented in San Antonio in 2010. She graduated from TTU in 2002 with her bachelor's degree in health and physical education.