JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) – Ashley Houts is wrapping up her first season as an ETSU women’s basketball coach and she’s enjoyed the ride so far this season.
“The kids are great just getting to work with them and show up everyday and work hard,” Houts said.
The diligent mindset is something Houts is accustomed to, given her playing days at Georgia. The former Bulldog is the school’s leader in minutes after staring in Athens from 2006-2010, scoring over 15-hundred points. This type of success led to Houts being selected to the USA national team to compete in the FIBA World Championship Games and World University Games.
“It was probably one of my bigger moments as an athlete to be able to represent our county,” Houts said.
After her time at Georgia, Houts was drafted in the second round of the 2010 WNBA Draft by the New York Liberty. She split her time in the WNBA with the Liberty and Washington Mystics.
Following her stint in the WNBA, the Trenton, Georgia native made stops in Israel, Spain and France, before coming back to the United States to take up coaching. Before landing at ETSU, she spent two seasons as the Director of Basketball Operations under current Tennessee head coach Kellie Harper.
Even though there’s some Tennessee connections, Houts nearly missed the ETSU opportunity.
“I didn’t even really know this job had been open or posted or anything and I think at this point, it’s all who you know,” Houts said.
Women’s head basketball coach Brittney Ezell mentioned that Houts’ character stood out in the hiring process.
“It all went back to character and it all went back to who do you want around your players, who do you want influencing your players and our mantra has always been that our kids are learning how to live by being taught how to play,” Ezell said.