During his stint as Oklahoma State’s head coach, Jim Littell has made his mark on the Cowgirl program, tallying 20-win campaigns in six of his eight seasons at the helm in Stillwater.
Last year saw Littell add the latest All-American to his resumé in Vivian Gray, who was also named a unanimous first-team All-Big 12 selection as well as the league's top newcomer.
The 2017-18 campaign resulted in the Cowgirls making their fifth NCAA appearance under Littell with the Cowgirls reaching the second round. OSU won 21 games, including 11 league games, and notched a trio of victories against Top 25 opponents.
Individually, Loryn Goodwin and Kaylee Jensen were at the forefront of OSU’s bevy of honors. Both players were named unanimous All-Big 12 picks as well as honorable mention All-Americans. Goodwin went on to drafted by the WNBA’s Dallas Wings.
In the classroom, Jensen was named a finalist for the Senior CLASS Award and was one of six Cowgirls to achieve Academic All-Big 12 status.
During the 2015-16 campaign, Littell guided the Cowgirls to their fourth consecutive NCAA appearance. In the process, he became the program’s first Big 12 Coach of the Year and coached the program’s first-ever Big 12 Player of the Year in Brittney Martin.
Littell directed OSU to its third consecutive NCAA berth during the 2014-15 campaign to cap the winningest four-year stretch in program history (89 victories). In the process, Martin earned All-America status and was a unanimous All-Big 12 selection.
The 2013-14 season produced a 25-win campaign as well as the program’s third NCAA Sweet 16 appearance. OSU reeled off a school-record 12 consecutive wins to start the year and closed the season with an overtime victory over Florida Gulf Coast and a triumph against No. 17 Purdue on the Boilermakers’ home floor to move on to the second weekend of the NCAA Tournament.
OSU’s win total marked the third-best in school history and the squad’s 69 victories rank as the best three-year run in school history.
Littell’s third campaign resulted in four players receiving all-league honors with Tiffany Bias leading the way as a unanimous All-Big 12 selection and the program’s first-ever Big 12 All-Defensive Team selection. Martin and Liz Donohoe received honorable mention recognition.
Bias went on to earn All-America status for the second consecutive year. She was also drafted by the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury, giving Littell’s program two consecutive years with a draft pick by the league.
In 2012-13, Littell guided OSU to its first NCAA Tournament berth since 2010. The Cowgirls got out of the gate quickly, starting the year with 11 consecutive victories to log the best start in school history. Coupled with its six wins to close out 2012, Littell’s squad held the nation’s longest winning streak for a month and a half. A pair of victories over Top 25 opponents in Big 12 play preceded Littell’s first NCAA victory, a convincing triumph over DePaul.
Individually, Littell coached Tiffany Bias and Toni Young to honorable mention All-America status, while Martin was named a freshman All-American. Young capped her career as a first-round draft pick by the WNBA’s New York Liberty and Martin finished her freshman campaign with an invite to USA Basketball’s U19 Team Trials.
Littell took over the Oklahoma State women’s basketball program under unthinkable circumstances one game into the 2011-12 season and admirably guided the Cowgirls through the most trying season in program history.
Following the tragic deaths of head coach Kurt Budke and assistant coach Miranda Serna on Nov. 17, Littell assumed his current role and directed the Cowgirls to the 11th 20-win season in program history and saw his squad extend its school-record string of postseason appearances to six in a row.
For the previous six years, Littell had served as OSU’s associate head coach and was an integral part in the resurgence of the Cowgirl program.
After serving in an interim capacity for his first four games, Littell was officially elevated to the head coaching position on Dec. 9.
It didn’t take Littell long to write his own chapter in the school’s record books, leading the squad to the Women’s National Invitation Tournament title in his first season as head coach.
The Cowgirls notched their first win over a Top 25 program under Littell’s guidance on Jan. 7 with a 70-51 triumph over No. 23 Texas. It took OSU just 17 days to earn its second win over a ranked team with Littell at the helm as the Cowgirls knocking off the defending national champion, Texas A&M.
Sandwiched in between OSU’s Top 25 triumphs was a down-to-the-wire Bedlam victory over Oklahoma, which snapped the Cowgirls’ eight-game losing streak against their in-state rivals. In the midst of a four-game losing streak, Littell rallied the Cowgirls with three consecutive victories to close the regular season and prime the squad for its postseason run.
OSU’s WNIT semifinal victory over San Diego resulted in Littell’s 20th victory as head coach, making him the first coach in program history to achieve the feat during their first season. A season-best crowd of 6,157 filed into Gallagher-Iba Arena and helped propel the Cowgirls to a 75-68 victory over James Madison in the title game.
Individually, Littell’s first campaign resulted in a pair of players earning postseason recognition with Bias garnering second-team All-Big 12 honors and Donohoe being named the league’s freshman of the year.
As associate head coach, he was instrumental in the Cowgirls producing the nation’s largest turnaround and the program’s first NCAA Tournament berth in more than a decade in 2007. He also helped OSU to NCAA berths in 2008 and 2010 as well as WNIT appearances in in 2009 and 2011.
Prior to his move to the Division I level, Littell constructed a hall of fame career during his 14-year tenure at Seward County (Kan.) Community College,
A 2009 inductee into the National Junior College Athletic Association Hall of Fame, Littell compiled an eye-popping set of numbers at his former post as the Lady Saints won 87 percent of their games, tallying a 418-61 ledger and producing nine Jayhawk West Conference titles under his guidance.
A nine-time conference coach of the year, Littell was named the WBCA National Coach of the Year in 2001 and was selected as the top coach in the region on four occasions, earning the distinction in 1999, 2002, 2004 and 2005.
Littell led Seward County to its first Region VI title in 1999 and followed up with regional titles in 2002, 2004 and 2005. In both 2000 and 2001, Littell led the Lady Saints to a No. 1 ranking in the final NJCAA poll and a combined record of 32-0 against conference opponents. His 2002 squad produced three All-Americans, a perfect 38-0 mark and the school’s first-ever national championship in any sport. He was named the NJCAA National Tournament Coach of the Year that same season. The 2001-02 season capped a three-year run by the Lady Saints that produced 104 wins against just two losses.
Under his watch, the Lady Saints recorded seven 30-win seasons. After finishing with a 14-16 record during his first season, Littell’s squads never produced less than 25 wins in a season and averaged nearly 32 wins per year against less than four losses over the course of his final 13 seasons.
The most impressive number of all may have come in the form of Seward County’s home record in his 14 seasons. From 1995-2004, the Lady Saints did not lose a home game, posting a 135-game winning streak inside the SCCC Activities Center to set the NJCAA national record. During the course of his final 13 seasons, Littell’s squads won 99 percent of their home contests, producing an astounding record of 189-2.
All told, his squad’s produced 11 All-Americans and five Region VI Most Valuable Players. Nine times, one of Littell’s players was tabbed as the Jayhawk West Conference Most Valuable Player, while four players from Seward County earned the league’s freshman of the year honor under his direction.
Prior to his run at Seward County, Littell spent one season at Garden Plains High School, posting a 21-3 mark. As head coach at Friends University from 1983-88, he produced a 95-39 record and a pair of conference championships. He also served as the assistant men’s coach at Cameron (Okla.) University from 1988-89.
Littell began his coaching career at Oxford High School in 1978 where he produced a 94-14 mark and a Kansas Class 2A state championship in 1981.
A 1977 graduate of Southwestern College, Littell and his wife, Barb, are the parents of two sons, Jerame, and Jon, a former standout for the Cowboy baseball team and currently a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers organization, as well as one daughter, Jaci.
Bill Annan is entering his 11th season at Oklahoma State and his seventh as the program's associate head coach.
Annan previously served two years as a Cowgirl assistant coach from 2011-13, as well as two seasons as the program's director of player development, working in that capacity from 2009-11.
During his time in Stillwater, the Cowgirls have made five NCAA Championship appearances, including a Sweet 16 finish in 2014 and the program's first WNIT title in 2012. Annan played integral roles in recruiting, opponent scouting, post development and OSU's offensive and defensive schemes.
In 2017-18, the Cowgirls advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament and produced a pair of All-Americans in Loryn Goodwin and Kaylee Jensen.
"Bill's work ethic has been an integral part of the growth and success of our program," Oklahoma State Head Coach Jim Littell said. "His experience, knowledge of the game and ability to motivate has helped make OSU basketball a staple in the postseason.
The 2015-16 Cowgirl squad finished the season 21-10, reaching the 20-win plateau for the fifth year in a row, making it the first such stretch in program history. The season ended with the fourth-straight NCAA Tournament appearance for the Cowgirls, which ties the longest string in program history.
Annan helped four former Cowgirls earn selections in the WNBA Draft, in addition to AP All-American recognition. This included guard Brittney Martin the 2016 Big-12 Player of the Year. He also helped three Cowgirls receive recognition on the Big-12 All-Freshman Team, along with forward Liz Donohoe the 2012 Big-12 Freshman of the Year.
On the recruiting trail, Annan helped the Cowgirls acquire national Top 100 recruits in 2012, 2013 and 2016, including Top 20 recruit Brittney Martin in 2012, according to ESPN.com's HoopGurlz. OSU has signed players from 10 states during Annan's tenure.
Annan joined the Cowgirl program after a successful run at Washburn Rural High School in Topeka, Kan. His tenure spanned nearly two decades and resulted in a career record of 303-109. Under his guidance, the Lady Blues won three state titles in 1996, 1999 and 2009, runner-up finishes in 1998 and 2004, and a third-place finish in 2000. Washburn Rural won 11 Centennial League titles in 18 years under Annan's leadership and made nine state tournament appearances. His teams reached the 20-win plateau six times, including a 24-1 mark in 1998 and 2009. He was inducted into the Washburn Rural High School Hall of Fame in 2015 for his coaching and teaching contributions to the school.
A three-time Kansas Basketball Coaches Association Coach of the Year, Annan was also a seven-time pick as the conference coach of the year. On five occasions, he was named the Topeka Capital-Journal City Coach of the Year. Annan was twice named the publication's state coach of the year and was named the Kansas Coaches Association Coach of the Year in 1999.
He began his coaching career in 1986 at Seaman (Kan.) High School where he served five seasons as an assistant for the boys' team.
Annan received his bachelor's in business education from Kansas State in 1986, before receiving his master's in educational administration from Kansas State in 1993.
Annan and his wife, Marcia, have two sons, Trent and Grant, both OSU graduates.
Ashley Davis arrived in Stillwater for the 2015-16 campaign after spending the previous two seasons at North Texas, including 2014-15 as the program's associate head coach. She served as the recruiting coordinator for the Mean Green during her first season.
During her first season with the program, the Cowgirls notched their fourth consecutive NCAA berth and the program’s fifth consecutive 20-win campaign in a row.
After a WNIT appearance in year two, OSU returned to the NCAA Tournament in 2017-18 and produced a pair of All-Americans in Loryn Goodwin and Kaylee Jensen.
Prior to her stint at North Texas, Davis spent four years as an assistant coach at Georgetown, helping the Hoyas to 20-win campaigns in each of those seasons. During her time with the program, Georgetown made three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, including a Sweet 16 berth in 2011, and reached the quarterfinals of the WNIT in 2009.
Davis began her coaching career at Western Hills High School in Fort Worth, Texas where she spent one season as the junior varsity coach and assistant to the varsity squad.
A native of San Antonio, Texas, Davis was a four-year letterwinner at TCU and was twice named an all-conference selection. She graduated with a bachelor's degree in business administration in 2005 and received her master's in educational administration in 2007.
Entering her third season as a member of the Oklahoma State women’s basketball coaching staff is Jerise Freeman.
During her first year at OSU, the Cowgirls advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament and finished with 21 wins and a pair of All-Americans in Loryn Goodwin and Kaylee Jensen.
Freeman came to Stillwater after spending the previous three years as an assistant coach for Eastern Washington. This past season, the Eagles posted a 19-14 mark and reached the semifinals of the Women’s Basketball Invitational.
Prior to her arrival at EWU, Freeman spent two seasons at Newman University in Wichita, Kan. During her stint, she assisted with scouting while overseeing the squad’s academic progress and summer camps. On the floor, her work was centered primarily on the defensive end of the floor.
A native of Wichita, Freeman spent the 2011-12 campaign as the director of operations at Missouri State where her duties included film exchange, team travel and assisting with summer camps.
From 2008-11, Freeman worked as an assistant at Butler (Kan.) Community College. During her tenure, the Grizzlies posted a 48-46 mark, including a 20-12 record during her final campaign.
Freeman began her career as a graduate assistant at Pittsburg (Kan.) State, where she coordinated opponent scouting, oversaw academic progress as well as preseason conditioning during the 2007-08 season.
As a player, Freeman earned honorable mention All-Big West honors as a senior for the University of the Pacific after averaging 13.2 points and 7.2 rebounds per game. She earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology with a focus in criminal justice in May of 2007.
Prior to her two seasons with the Tigers, she played for Littell at Seward County (Kan.) Community College where she helped the Lady Saints to a 67-8 record during her two seasons.
The 2019-20 season will mark the eighth for longtime coaching veteran Jack Easley as Oklahoma State's director of player development. After a 19-year stint as an assistant at OSU from 1983-2002, Easley found his way back to Stillwater for the 2012-13 campaign following a successful 10-year run that included stops at Providence and Iowa State.
Easley spent the 2002-03 season at Providence before making his return to the Big 12 Conference as a member of the Cyclone staff where he served as the program's associate head coach for seven years.
ISU reached the postseason in each of his nine seasons in Ames, including seven NCAA Championship appearances. The Cyclones advanced to the NCAA Elite Eight in 2009 and made an NCAA Sweet 16 appearance the following year.
ISU competed in the Women's National Invitation Tournament twice during his tenure, reaching the event's semifinals in 2003-04.
Easley's first stint at OSU lasted nearly two decades and resulted in the Cowgirls producing seven 20-win seasons and a 350-244 record. OSU logged seven NCAA Championship berths, including the program's first-ever Sweet 16 appearance in 1991, as well as two WNIT appearances. Additionally, OSU won all three of the program's conference championships during that time.
A native of Kansas City, Mo., Easley began his coaching career at Slater High School in Missouri, coaching the girls basketball team from 1977-79. He then moved on to State Fair (Mo.) Community College where he served as the head women's coach and assistant men's coach from 1979-83.
A shooting guard for two seasons at State Fair (Mo.) CC, Easley went on to play two seasons at Missouri Valley College. He earned a degree his degree in physical education in 1977.
Easley and his wife, Marla, have three sons; Sam, Lance and Zac and five grandchildren; Logan, Easton, Ty, Hattie and Gabe.