Aisha Stewart named ASU women's hoops assistant coach

JONESBORO, Ark. ( – Arkansas State head women's basketball coach Brian Boyer has announced that Aisha Stewart will join the Red Wolves' staff as an assistant coach for the 2014-15 season.

Stewart has nine years of coaching experience, including six within the Sun Belt at South Alabama where she coached from 2008 until 2014. She served as one of the Jaguars' academic coordinators while also taking part in recruiting trips, preparing scouting reports and one on one shooting instruction with student-athletes.

"I am excited to be part of the women's basketball coaching staff and look forward to getting to work with the team as soon as possible," Stewart said. "I am looking forward to being part of the wonderful Jonesboro community. I have always enjoyed my time in Jonesboro when I have been in town as an opposing coach and I look forward to getting to know the fans and supporters of the A-State family."

Her time at South Alabama saw the Jaguars claim 95 victories, including a 21-11 record in her first season in 2008-09. Stewart was responsible for helping South Alabama become the Sun Belt's leader in scoring defense at 52.8 percent in 2011-12, a stat that also ranked 11th in the nation.

Under Stewart's tutelage, seven players were named to the Sun Belt's All-Conference teams, including Mary Nixon and Masna El who each earned third-team selections in 2011-12 and 2012-13. She guided Sarda Peterson into the school's career leader in 3-pointers made from 2009-12 and helped Siedah Banks to second place on South Alabama's career free throw percentage list.

I'm looking forward to having Aisha join our staff and help us build on program's success," Boyer said. "Everyone that has worked with her has had nothing but great things to say about her.  She has coached at the Division I level for eight years and has been in the Sun Belt Conference six of those years so she knows what it takes to be successful at this level.  My impression of her is that she is extremely organized, she has a passion for coaching, she's driven to be successful and she is a great communicator."

In her six years as an assistant coach at South Alabama, the team ranked either first or second in the league in defensive field goal percentage and scoring defense in four of those years. She was also responsible for the recruitment and development of Rachel Cumbo, who led the Sun Belt in 3-point field goal percentage this past year.

As the team's academic coordinator liaison, Stewart sent 18 student-athletes to the All-Sun Belt Conference Academic Honor Roll (GPA 3.0 and above) and had seven make the Sun Belt Conference's Commissioners List (GPA 3.5 and above).

Before her time at South Alabama, she spent two seasons at South Carolina State as an assistant coach where she handled both administrative and coaching duties.

Prior to joining the South Carolina State staff, Stewart spent one season as an assistant coach at Allen County Community College in Iola, Kan. She helped guide the Lady Red Devils to a 19-12 overall record and 11-7 record in KJCCC play, the team's best record in nearly a decade.

She is a 2004 graduate of Catawba (N.C.) College where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology and received her master's degree in rehabilitation counseling from South Carolina State in 2008.

Stewart played at Catawba College where she set a school record in 3-pointers made and led her team to back-to-back conference titles.

She is a native of Topeka, Kan., and attended Highland Park High School.

"I was humbled to see the amount of interest that this position generated once it was advertised," Boyer said. "There were numerous highly qualified candidates but I'm convinced that Aisha is the best fit for our program."

Stewart will officially begin her post at A-State Monday, June 16. She replaces Shaquita Renelique who was promoted to a position in Academic Services on the A-State campus.