Former Oklahoma State player named new Cornell basketball assistant
June 26, 2014 · Kerry Kahl, Cornell College
Heather Howard, a former player at Oklahoma State University, has been named assistant coach on Brent Brase's Cornell women's basketball staff.
Howard comes to the Hilltop from Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph, where she was a graduate assistant in 2013-14 prior to playing one season for the Division II Griffons.
Howard replaces Teresa Cecchetti, who spent the past two seasons as Cornell's top assistant.
"This is a great opportunity for me," said Howard, a native of Shawnee Mission, Kan. "What impressed me most during the interview process was the family atmosphere here. Coach Brase has a tremendous drive and passion for the game. His willingness to help as a mentor will move me along in coaching."
The 6-foot-3 Howard earned second team honors in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association during her senior season, which included an MIAA Player of the Week accolade. She started all 28 games at Missouri Western State, averaging 13.1 points and 9.5 rebounds while guiding the 16-12 Griffons to the second round of the 2013 MIAA Tournament.
Howard was selected to the MIAA Academic Honor Roll and received a master's degree in sports fitness and management in May 2014. She joined the Griffons' coaching staff in 2013-14 as the team finished 10-16.
Howard played in 69 games as a three-year letterwinner on Oklahoma State's basketball team from 2009 to 2012. She saw action in 20 contests as a freshman, highlighted by an appearance in the 2010 NCAA Division I Tournament against Chattanooga. The Cowgirls won the WNIT during Howard's junior season.
"We are really excited to have Heather join our staff," Brase said. "Not only is Heather a great person, but she also has a tremendous basketball IQ and work ethic. She will be great on and off the floor with our current team members. Heather will be great on the recruiting front as well. She's a great fit for Cornell and our basketball program."
Howard earned a bachelor's degree in sports management with a minor in marketing from Oklahoma State in May 2012. She was tabbed to the Academic All-Big 12 First Team in 2011 and 2012. Howard was also recipient of the 2012 Dr. Gerald Lage Award, recognizing 60 student-athletes in the Big 12 with a cumulative GPA of 3.80.
Howard joins a strong Cornell program that has captured two consecutive Midwest Conference regular-season titles and sported a 45-6 record over the past two seasons. The Rams finished 20-4 last conference play.