DAVIDSON, N.C. — Davidson College Director of Athletics Jim Murphy announced on Wednesday the hiring of Wake Forest assistant coach Gayle Coats Fulks as the Wildcats' 12th head women's basketball coach.
Coach Coats Fulks will be introduced at a press conference next Tuesday, May 16 at 11 a.m. inside the Harry L. Vance Athletic Center.
“Gayle understands the opportunities and relationships of a high-academic Division I environment,” said Murphy. “She has been recognized by her peers for her commitment to the scholar-athlete experience and her ability to recruit and develop players. We welcome Gayle and her husband Ryan to the Davidson community.”
In addition to helping the Demon Deacons to consecutive NIT appearances the last two seasons, Coats Fulks was recognized during the 2015-16 campaign as one of the Women's Basketball Coaches Association's (WBCA) Thirty Under 30 honorees. The award is given annually to up-and-coming coaches 30 years old and younger, to recognize their involvement in community service, mentorship and impact on others' professional manner and attitude as well as association involvement.
While on the bench for Head Coach Jen Hoover the last five seasons, Coats Fulks assisted in all aspects of the program, from academics to recruiting, where she served as an integral part to the Demon Deacons putting together ranked recruiting classes each year on staff.
In her first season with the Deacs, she helped guide one of the top-scoring backcourts in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Point guard Chelsea Douglas led the team in scoring at 14.6 points per game, while Lakevia Boykin was right behind her at 14.4 points. The two combined to make 134 three-pointers on the season, with Douglas' 72 ranking as the third-most for a single-season in school history.
"It is a dream come true to be named the next head women's basketball coach at Davidson,” commented Coats Fulks. “I want to thank President Quillen and Jim Murphy for the opportunity to join this amazing community. I believe that Davidson has the perfect fusion of genuine and dedicated people, prestigious academics, and top-notch facilities to achieve a high level of success on and off the court. I will work tirelessly to create a culture of excellence in everything that we do. I cannot wait to get started. Go Wildcats!”
She takes over a program that just finished its third season in the Atlantic 10 Conference after being in the Southern Conference for 21 seasons.
Coats Fulks joined the Wake Forest staff after one season as an assistant coach at UNC Greensboro in 2011-12. With the Spartans, Coats Fulks assisted with academics, recruiting, scouting, game preparation and practice planning, along with player development. She also served as the team's academic liaison.
Coats Fulks broke into the coaching ranks at Longwood University, where she was on staff from 2007-11. In her first season with the Lancers, they went 16-13, notching the program's best win total in its Division I era at the time.
Prior to her first collegiate job, Coats Fulks served as the Assistant Video Coordinator during the 2007 season for the WNBA's New York Liberty, where she assisted with scouting reports and film exchange.
A four-year letterwinner at Fairleigh Dickinson, Coats Fulks was a co-captain and member of the Northeast Conference All-Academic squad. She graduated in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science degree in business management.
Gayle Coats Fulks File
Birthdate: April 6, 1985
Hometown: Virginia Beach, Va.
Alma Mater: Farleigh Dickinson, 2007
Davidson, Head Coach (2017-pr.)
Wake Forest, Assistant Coach (2012-17)
UNCG, Assistant Coach (2011-12)
Longwood, Assistant Coach (2007-11)
New York Liberty (WNBA), Assistant Video Coordinator (2007)