Missy Tiber Named GSW Women’s Basketball Head Coach

Published 4:26 pm Monday, April 15, 2024

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From Staff Reports


AMERICUS – Georgia Southwestern State University has hired Missy Tiber as its new head women’s basketball coach, Director of Athletics Mike Leeder announced Friday afternoon.

“We are very excited that Missy has accepted our offer to be the next head coach of the Georgia Southwestern State University Lady Hurricanes,” Leeder said. “Coach Tiber came in and immediately connected with the women on our current roster, and her national recruiting contacts should allow us to remain nationally competitive going forward.”

Tiber takes over a Georgia Southwestern program that has a record of 78-18 over the past three seasons with back-to-back Peach Belt Conference regular season and tournament championships. The Lady Hurricanes have earned an invitation to the NCAA Division II national tournament for three straight seasons and have advanced further each year, this past season reaching the Elite Eight.

“Missy is a proven winner at the NCAA Division II level,” Leeder said. “We are looking forward to watching her come in and continue the upward trajectory our women’s basketball program has been over the course of the past five seasons.”

Tiber comes to Georgia Southwestern from the University of North Alabama, where she led the women’s basketball program at the NCAA Division I level for five seasons. Over 11 seasons at North Alabama, Tiber compiled an overall record of 172-147. She began her stint at UNA in 2013-14 and led the UNA women’s basketball program through the Division I transition.

Tiber’s 2017-18 season at UNA broke or tied five individual and four team school records, including the most regular season wins in school history. The team returned to the NCAA Division II tournament for the first time since 2013 and also cracked the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Top 25 Poll for the first time in 24 years. In the final season of Division II, Tiber’s team finished with a 24-5 record. The following season, UNA made its Division I debut with a 21-9 record and won two games at the Women’s Basketball Invitational (WBI) en route to the semifinal round. In the program’s second year of Division I, the Lions posted another 21-9 mark, giving UNA three straight 20-win seasons for the first time in program history. She won her 300th game on Feb. 3, 2020, with a 57-55 road win at NJIT. Earlier in the season, she won her 100th game at UNA with a record-breaking 128-26 home victory over Virginia-Lynchburg.

“I am honored and thankful that athletic director Mike Leeder and the search committee has selected me to take over the reigns at Georgia Southwestern,” Tiber said. “Justin Payne and Hana Holden have built a tradition of excellence in winning Peach Belt Conference and NCAA Regional championships, and I will take great pride in guiding this group of young women to continued success both on and off the court.”

Tiber arrived at UNA after serving as the head women’s basketball coach at NCAA Division I Southern Illinois University from 2009-13. She also has an additional 15 years of experience at the NCAA Division II level at West Liberty State College, Belmont Abbey College and Tusculum College.

From 2005-2009, Tiber was the head women’s basketball coach at Tusculum where she took a program at the bottom of the South Atlantic Conference and compiled a record of 86-34 and a conference mark of 40-20. Over her last two seasons there, Tusculum was 52-11 overall and 26-4 in conference play, winning back-to-back conference championships and twice playing in the NCAA Tournament. The NCAA Tournament appearance (2008) was the first in school history. The team’s first NCAA Tournament victory in 2009 was also a landmark for the Pioneer women’s basketball program.

Prior to her time at Tusculum, Tiber spent four seasons as the head coach at NCAA DII Belmont Abbey College. During that time, her teams compiled an overall record of 81-36 and a conference mark of 61-19. Under her leadership the 2001-2002 team posted a 22-8 record, won the Carolinas Virginia Athletic Conference Regular Season Championship, the Carolinas Virginia Tournament Championship and advanced to participate in the NCAA Division II Tournament.

Tiber began her coaching career as an assistant women’s basketball coach at her alma mater, West Liberty (W.V.) State College. During her six years as an assistant, West Liberty was one of the most successful Division II basketball programs in the East Region. The Bears won four West Virginia Conference Tournament Championships, three West Virginia regular season championships and participated in four NCAA Division II Tournaments. West Liberty averaged over 20 wins per season during her time there.

Tiber just completed her 24th season as a head coach and has a career record of 353-302. During her coaching career, Tiber has coached numerous players who have received conference, regional and national awards, and every player that has exhausted their eligibility playing for her has gone on to earn their degree.

Tiber is a 1994 graduate of West Liberty State with a Bachelor of Science degree. She also has a Master’s degree in Sport Leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Tiber has a son, Ezekiel and daughter, Lola.

“My family and I are excited to join the GSW family and becoming active members of the Americus community,” Tiber said. “Go Canes!”

The hiring is pending a final successful background check. Fans and media will have an opportunity to meet Coach Tiber at an introductory press conference to be announced upon completion of her hire.