Teresa Weatherspoon

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Teresa Weatherspoon
Teresa Weatherspoon at Maggie Dixon.jpg
Sport(s) Women's college basketball
Biographical details
Born (1965-12-08) December 8, 1965 (age 53)
Pineland, Texas
Playing career
1984–1988 Louisiana Tech
1988–1992 Busto Arsizio
1992–1993 Magenta
1993–1994 Como
1994–1996 CSKA Moscow
1997–2003 New York Liberty
2004 Los Angeles Sparks
Position(s) Point Guard
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
2007–2008 Westchester Phantoms
2008–2009 Louisiana Tech (assoc HC)
2009–2014 Louisiana Tech
Head coaching record
Overall 99–71
Accomplishments and honors
NCAA Division I Champion (1988)
Olympic Games Gold Medal (1988)
World Championships Gold Medal (1986)
Goodwill Games Gold Medal (1986)
World University Games Gold Medal (1987)
2-time Russian League Champion (1995,1996)
America South Regular Season Champion (1988)
America South Tournament Champion (1988)
4-time WNBA Eastern Conference Champion (1997, 1999, 2000, 2002)
2-time WAC Regular Season Champion (2009, 2011)
WAC Tournament Champion (2010)
Wade Trophy winner (1988)
2-time Kodak All-American (1987,1988)
2-time All-Final Four Team (1987,1988)
Region Most Outstanding Player (1988)
2-time All-Region Tournament Team (1987,1988)
America South Conference Player of the Year (1988)
LSWA Louisiana Player of the Year (1988)
Broderick Cup winner (1988)
2-time WNBA Defensive Player of the Year (1997,1998)
4-time WNBA All-Star (1999,2000,2001,2002)
4-time All-WNBA second team (1997,1998,1999,2000)
6-time Italian League All-Star (1989,1990,1991,1992,1993,1994)
NCAA Women's Basketball Team of the Decade (1980s)
Olympic Games Bronze Medal (1992)
New York Magazine "Best of New York" Award
Maggie Dixon Rookie Coach of the Year (2010)
Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame (2010)
Women's Basketball Hall of Fame (2010)
WBCA Region 7 Coach of the Year (2011)
Louisiana Tech Athletic Hall of Fame (1995)

Teresa Gaye Weatherspoon (born December 8, 1965 in Pineland, Texas) is a retired American Women's National Basketball Association player who played for the New York Liberty and Los Angeles Sparks and the former head basketball coach of the Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters. In 2011, she was voted in by fans as one of the Top 15 players in WNBA history.


Weatherspoon was a health and physical education major and star basketball player at Louisiana Tech. In 1988, her senior season, she led the Lady Techsters to the NCAA national title.

Weatherspoon is one of the original players of the WNBA in 1997 when she joined the New York Liberty in the WNBA's inaugural season. A talented ball-handler and charismatic leader, her energetic play quickly endeared her to the fans and media in New York. In 1997 she was the first winner of the league's Defensive player of the year award. She won the title again in 1998. Up until the 2003 season, she held the distinction of being the only WNBA player to start every one of her games. After the 2003 season, she was not re-signed by the Liberty and signed with the Los Angeles Sparks. After her 2004 season with the Sparks, Weatherspoon retired.

In 2007 Weatherspoon was the head coach of the Westchester Phantoms of the American Basketball Association. In April 2008 she joined the coaching staff of the Lady Techsters of Louisiana Tech. On February 9, 2009, she was promoted to interim head coach to replace former head coach Chris Long. April 2, 2009 saw Louisiana Tech shed the interim label and name Teresa head women's basketball coach. In 2011, she was voted in by fans as one of the Top 15 players in the fifteen-year history of the WNBA.[1]

USA Basketball

Weatherspoon was selected to represent the USA at the inaugural Goodwill games, held in Moscow in July 1986. North Carolina State's Kay Yow served as head coach. The team opened up with a 72–53 of Yugoslavia, and followed that with a 21-point win over Brazil 91–70. The third game was against Czechoslovakia and would be much closer, ending in a 78–70 victory. The USA faced Bulgaria in the semi-final match up, and again won, this time 67–58. This set up the final against the Soviet Union, led by 7-foot-2 Ivilana Semenova, considered the most dominant player in the world. The Soviet team, had a 152–2 record in major international competition over the prior three decades, including an 84–82 win over the USA in the 1983 World Championships. The Soviets held the early edge, leading 21–19 at one time, before the USA went on a scoring run to take a large lead they would never relinquish. The final score was 83–60 in favor of the USA, earning the gold medal for the USA squad. For the entire event, Teresa Gaye Weatherspoon averaged 1.6 points per game.[2]

Weatherspoon continued with the National team at the 1986 World Championship, held in Moscow, a month after the Goodwill games in Moscow, although she was injured and unable to play. The USA team was even more dominant this time. The early games were won easily, and the semifinal against Canada, while the closest game for the USA so far, ended up an 82–59 victory. At the same time, the Soviet team was winning easily as well, and the final game pitted two teams each with 6–0 records. The Soviet team, having lost only once at home, wanted to show that the Goodwill games setback was a fluke. The USA team started by scoring the first eight points, and raced to a 45–23 lead, although the Soviets fought back and reduced the halftime margin to 13. The USA went on a 15—1 run in the second half to out the game away, and ended up winning the gold medal with a score of 108–88.[3]

Weatherspoon was selected to be a member of the team representing the USA at the 1987 World University Games held in Zagreb, Yugoslavia. The USA team won four of the five contests. After winning their first two games against Poland and Finland, the USA faced the host team Yugoslavia. The game went to overtime, but Yugoslavia prevailed, 93–89. The USA faced China in the next game. They won 84–83, but they needed to win by at least five points to remain in medal contention. The won the final game against Canada to secure fifth place. Weatherspoon averaged 8.6 points per games. She recorded 21 steals over the course of the event, tied for first place on the team.[4]

Awards and honors

Head coaching record

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters (Western Athletic Conference) (2009–2013)
2008–09 Louisiana Tech 9–2 8–0 T–1st WNIT Second Round
2009–10 Louisiana Tech 23–9 11–5 2nd NCAA First Round
2010–11 Louisiana Tech 24–8 15–1 1st NCAA First Round
2011–12 Louisiana Tech 17–15 8–6 3rd
2012–13 Louisiana Tech 14–17 9–9 5th
Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters (Conference USA) (2013–2014)
2013–14 Louisiana Tech 12–20 5–11 14th
Louisiana Tech: 99–71 56–32
Total: 99–71

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


Weatherspoon was born to Charles and Rowena Weatherspoon in Pineland, Texas. Her father, Charles Sr., played minor league baseball in the Minnesota Twins' farm system, and holds the record for the most grand slams (3) in a minor league game. Weatherspoon has two brothers and three sisters. She credits her family, especially her mother Rowena Weatherspoon, as the biggest influence on her basketball career. Her fans call her by her nicknames "T-Spoon" or "Spoon". She and Arizona Cardinals linebacker Sean Weatherspoon are second cousins.

In 1999, she published a book titled Teresa Weatherspoon's Basketball for Girls, filled with anecdotes and advice on improving basketball skills for young girls.

Vital statistics

Career highlights

  • WNBA #2 all-time in career assists
  • Led the New York Liberty to the first ever WNBA Finals in 1997
  • Started in the first four WNBA All-Star games (1999, 2000, 2001, & 2002)
  • All WNBA Second Team (1997, 1998, 1999, & 2000)
  • WNBA Defensive Player of the Year (1997 & 1998)
  • Hit a memorable court to court shot to tie the WNBA Finals series with the Houston Comets in 1999
  • Started all her WNBA games up until the 2003 season

WNBA career statistics

  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game  RPG  Rebounds per game
 APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game  BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game
 TO  Turnovers per game  FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 Bold  Career high League leader

Regular season


Awards and honors

As a Basketball Player:

  • 1986 World Championships Gold Medalist (with Team USA)
  • 1986 Goodwill Games Gold Medalist (with Team USA)
  • 1987 World University Games Gold Medalist (with Team USA)
  • 1988 Olympic Games Gold Medalist (with Team USA)
  • 1992 Olympic Games Bronze Medalist (with Team USA)[1]
  • 1988 Wade Trophy[7]
  • 2010 Weatherspoon was inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame as part of the class of 2010.[8]
  • 2010 Inducted into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame
  • 2011 Inducted into the New York Liberty Ring of Honor
  • 2011 Named One of Top 15 WNBA Players of All-Time

As a Head Coach of Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters:

  • 2009 WAC Regular Season Champions
  • 2009 WNIT Second Round
  • 2010 WAC Tournament Champions
  • 2010 NCAA Tournament
  • 2010 Maggie Dixon Division I Rookie Coach of the Year[9]
  • 2011 WAC Regular Season Champions
  • 2011 NCAA Tournament
  • 2011 WBCA Region 7 Coach of the Year

See also


  1. http://www.wnba.com/allstar/2011/top15_072311.html
  2. "First Women's Goodwill Games -- 1986". USA Basketball. June 10, 2010. Archived from the original on 5 September 2015. Retrieved 20 October 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "Tenth World Championship For Women -- 1986". USA Basketball. August 14, 2013. Archived from the original on 5 September 2015. Retrieved 19 October 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. "Fourteenth World University Games -- 1993". USA Basketball. Archived from the original on 7 September 2015. Retrieved 12 October 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "PAST HONDA SPORTS AWARD WINNERS FOR BASKETBALL". THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards Program. Retrieved 8 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "Past Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year Winners (Honda Cup)". THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards Program. Retrieved 8 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "The Wade Trophy". Women's Basketball Coaches Association. Retrieved 30 Jun 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Lobo: I'm just 1st of many Huskies heading to Hall". Fox Sports. Jun 11, 2010. Retrieved 8 May 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "Spalding Maggie Dixon NCAA Division I Rookie Coach of the Year". Women's Basketball Coaches Association. Retrieved 1 Jul 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links