Trio of coaches with NE Nebraska ties take aim at NCAA Tourney berth for CSU
LAS VEGAS, Nev. -- A trio of coaches with northeast Nebraska ties will target an NCAA Tournament berth Wednesday night.
The Colorado State women's basketball team, fresh off an upset of second-seeded New Mexico, will play top-seeded UNLV in the Mountain West Tournament Championship at 9 PM CT/8 PM MT.
Head coach Ryun Williams is seeking to guide the Rams to the NCAA Tournament for the second time in his tenure Fort Collins, having taken CSU to the tourney in 2016 after an unbeaten conference run.
Williams previously coached 10 years at Wayne State College, compiling a 182-105 record with the Wildcats. He guided WSC to two NCAA Division II Tournaments in his final three seasons in northeast Nebraska.
In between Wayne State and Colorado State, Williams made a stop in Vermillion, S.D., where he coached Amber Cunningham (formerly Amber Hegge) at the University of South Dakota. Cunningham, a former all-state performer at Crofton, is now an assistant on Williams' staff.
Cunningham is one of 11 players in USD history to tally 1,000 points and 500 rebounds in a career, and she was a three-time first-team all-conference selection. That followed a successful career a Crofton, where she was a state champion for the Warriors.
Also on Williams' staff is a familiar face from his days in Wayne. Rico Burkett, who was the head coach for the Wildcat men's program after serving two different stints as an assistant coach, coached in Wayne for a period of eight years overlapping Williams' tenure. Burkett joined the Rams' coaching staff in 2018.