WBB: UAFS tabs McAdams as head coach

Courtesy: Arkansas-Fort Smith Athletics

Fort Smith Director of Athletics Curtis Janz has announced the hiring of Ryan McAdams as head coach of the UAFS women’s basketball program.

“I am very excited to have Ryan McAdams lead our women’s basketball program,” Janz said. “We had an exhaustive search and Ryan rose to the top quickly with his commitment to student-athlete health and well-being along with his concentration on character and leadership development. I believe Ryan can lead us to the top tier of the Lone Star Conference.”

McAdams comes to UAFS from New Mexico State, where he was an assistant women’s basketball coach for the past four seasons.

“I am tremendously excited for the opportunity that lays ahead for my family and I at UAFS and in the Fort Smith community,” McAdams said. “This is a great move for us professionally and personally and could not have happened without the support of my family. I would like to thank Curtis Janz for his leadership and purpose in the athletics community. He and I align in a number of ways regarding a holistic approach and overall student-athlete experience and wellness. I am very much looking forward to working with him and his staff.

“Thank you to Dr. Lee Krehbiel, Katie Beineke, Tommye Robinson, Brian O’Connor, and Jostun Pomplun for playing a key role in my hiring process. They were critical as I learned about the on and off-campus communities,” McAdams continued.

During his time at New Mexico State, some key responsibilities for McAdams were assisting the head coach with in-game decisions and substitutions, practice planning, game preparation, film breakdown, on-floor teaching, creating scouting reports and serving as the position coach for post players.

McAdams helped guide the Aggies to the 2019 Western Athletic Conference championship and a berth in the NCAA Tournament. NMSU also won the regular season conference championship in 2018 and advanced to the WNIT.

McAdams developed two WAC Players of the Year and 10 All-WAC players in his four seasons as an assistant.

Prior to New Mexico State, McAdams served as the head women’s basketball coach at Eastern Arizona College for seven seasons. There he accumulated an overall record of 137-82 with a 103-50 mark in conference play.

The Gila Monsters had their best season in 2014-15 under McAdams, as the team finished 27-5, 20-2 in conference for the best record in the program’s 37-year history.

McAdams and EAC advanced to three NJCAA Tournaments, including advancing to the second round for the first time in program history. The Gila Monsters were the 2015-2016 Region 1/District A champions and had four consecutive 20-win seasons with McAdams at the helm and were ranked as high as No. 5. He developed one conference player of the year, 14 All-Conference players, 15 All-Region players and four All-Americans.

McAdams has also spent time as an assistant on the men’s side, serving as the assistant men’s basketball coach at Eastern Arizona College before accepting the women’s head coaching position. He has also been an assistant at Cameron University, Cal Poly University and Cuesta Community College.

Returning players are eager to get to work with Coach McAdams for the upcoming season.

“I’m very excited to get on campus and back to work with Coach McAdams and my teammates,” said senior forward Leiloni Culley. “I look forward to a new style of play and think he is a great fit for the program. I can’t wait to get started and look forward to the upcoming season.”

McAdams shares the same sentiment as he guides the Lady Lions into the future.

“I am humbled and grateful for this opportunity. UAFS women’s basketball has a storied tradition of championships and success in all areas,” McAdams said. “I will do all I can to continue this tradition and serve my student-athletes first and foremost at all times. I cannot wait to get things started and I am excited to be a Lion!”

Junior guard Hannah Boyett is equally excited for what McAdams can bring to the program off the court as well as on it.

“He really brought the energy explaining his philosophy of how he wants to build this program,” Boyett said. “His mindset is to focus on our mental health and make sure we have a good overall experience as a student-athlete. I believe that’s a great asset and opportunity for everyone to be successful.

“We’re all ready to be on campus and get back to work,” Boyett continued. “I’m very eager to see what this year has in store for us and how he will impact this program.”

McAdams graduated from Cal Poly University, San Luis Obispo in 2004 with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism before also earning a Master of Science in Educational Administration and Leadership from there in 2006.