Ashley Wilson has been named head coach of the Mitchell College women’s basketball team, as announced by Director of Athletics Matt Finlayson.
Wilson, who will make her collegiate head coaching debut with the Mariners, arrives in New London after spending the previous two seasons as an assistant coach at Division I Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, Connecticut. She takes over for Courtney Burns who compiled a 76-63 record across six seasons at Mitchell while guiding the Mariners to consecutive NECC championships and the program’s first two appearances in the NCAA Tournament.
“We are so excited to welcome Ashley Wilson as our next head women’s basketball coach,” commented Finlayson. “Ashley’s basketball acumen will serve the program well and her leadership will be an asset for Mitchell College. We believe that she will build great relationships with our student-athletes and be able to recruit in a climate that is always changing. We want to continue the success of the women’s hoops program as we enter the GNAC and feel like Ashley is the perfect person for the job.”
During her time as an assistant coach at Central Connecticut, Wilson had a wide variety of responsibilities, which included serving as an individual position coach for a player who was named All-Northeast Conference Second Team and became the 17th player in program history to score 1,000 points. Wilson served as a 4/5 position coach, led individual workouts, led individual film sessions, handled scouting of opponents, and developed game plans of opponents.
“I would like to thank my supportive wife, Leana, my parents (Connie, Jeff) and brother (Jeff Jr.),” shared Wilson. “I would also like to thank my college coach/mentor Carrie Lohr. This is a wonderful opportunity for me. I can’t tell you how excited I am to get started. I am honored to lead this group of young women. I look forward to developing the student-athletes on and off the court.”
Additional roles which Wilson handled while at CCSU included in-game offensive play calling, post-game film breakdown, regional recruiting in Connecticut, game day operations, team travel itineraries and budgeting. She also served as training room liaison, providing health services updates and rehab programs for incoming and returning student athletes, as well as strength and conditioning liaison, producing regular updates and adjustments.
Prior to arriving at CCSU, Wilson spent the 2020-21 season as the head coach of the women’s basketball program at Putnam Science Academy in Putnam, Connecticut. While with the Mustangs, Wilson handled all aspects of running the women’s prep basketball program, including scheduling, recruiting, budgeting and practice planning.
“One of my biggest strengths is being relatable,” Wilson said. “I am a former student-athlete, so I have been through this journey before. Therefore, I can give insight and advice from an athlete perspective. I am very positive, enthusiastic and supportive. I feel my passion for the game is shown through my coaching style. My energy is contagious and will help fuel the team at times.”
Following her playing career overseas in Portugal and China, Wilson began coaching in China as a basketball trainer for Five Star Sports, working with both male and female athletes and leading Nike, NBA and CBA event clinics. She then spent a year working at Nike Rise Academy as trainer where she instructed young adults in basketball sessions ranging from “Fundamental 1” to “Elite” trainings. It was here where she also crafted various levels of professional training upon assessment of individual skill sets.
Wilson played collegiately at Division II Wayne State University from 2012-2016. While there, she helped lead the team to the Sweet 16 Round of the NCAA Tournament in 2014 and graduated as the program’s career leader in free throw percentage. During her career with the Warriors, Wilson averaged 17 points, eight rebounds, two blocks and two steals per game.
“I am extremely excited about the future of Mitchell,” continued Wilson. “We have great pieces coming back to the team and will add others as we build our roster for the upcoming season. Our future is bright as we intend to continue the success of previous years. The sky is the limit, that’s how I feel here. I am goal-oriented and disciplined. Expectations will be known upfront. Team goals will be set and every day we will strive to reach our end goals. Every day matters along the way, and we will build day by day.”
Wilson holds a B.A. in Public Relations with a minor in business from Wayne State University.