Wiley basketball tipped off a new era Thursday morning when it announced its new head coaches. Lenise Stallings will be head coach of the women’s team while Chase Campbell will be head coach of the men’s team.
"When I was initially confronted with the task of identifying the next leaders of these programs, I immediately began to consider some of the traits and characteristics that I’d like to see embodied in the successful candidates," Wiley College athletic director Dr. Brandon Dumas told the crowd at the press conference. "A Christian, a proven winner, someone possessing adequate experience, a commitment to maintaining the spirit of winning and excellence and an precise understanding of the direction and vision of our president all came to mind. After praying for guidance, and soliciting the assistance of dynamic search committee consisting of nearly every aspect of our constituency, reviewing the applications, resumes and credentials of umpteen applicants, we identified exactly what I had envisioned, plus some."
The position will be Stallings’ first as head coach after serving as an assistant coach at Tennessee State and Mississippi Valley State University.
“HBCU (historically black college and universities), it’s a faith-based institution,” Stallings said when she asked why she chose to coach at Wiley. “This is a prestigious private college in Texas, which is a recruiting stomping ground. It’s not too far from home so I’m extremely excited to be here.”
She added she has strong expectations for her first year at the helm.
“I definitely expect them to play hard but I really want them to know the expectations of me,” she offered. “I want to do this coaching thing together. I want to talk about the process together. They can expect things from me and I will hold them accountable.”
Campbell agreed, adding he’s excited to work for a historical program.
“The history, the rich history, it’s unbelievable,” he said. “It’s an HBCU. I’m proud to work at another HBCU. My family went to HBCU. Dr. (Herman) Felton Jr. is unbelievable in what he’s done in higher education and what he’s done here at Wiley College. Dr. Brandon Dumas and what he’s done, his history and the search committee, they were awesome to me. Wiley is a place that has progressively been moving forward and it’s a place that I’m excited to be part of.
“Tuskegee University was my most recent spot,” Campbell said when asked about his coaching history. “Before that I was at Benedict College as the associate head coach. Before that, I was at Paine College for three years, two as an assistant and one as the head coach. Before that, I was at Newberry College in Newberry, South Carolina.”
Dumas said there were about 30 applicants between the two positions.
“The response was overwhelming and encouraging that they wanted to come be part of the program,” he said.