Women’s basketball assistant Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton ready to get to work

Emma Louviere, General Sports Reporter

Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton didn’t even have keys to her new apartment before getting to work as the new assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for the Texas women’s basketball team.

“She landed, we picked her up, we went over to the private terminal, got on a school plane and went recruiting,” head coach Vic Schaefer said Sept. 29. “She didn’t want it any other way.”

Texas Athletics announced Sept. 13 that Schaefer had hired Wisdom-Hylton to be the women’s basketball team’s newest assistant coach and recruiting coordinator. Wisdom-Hylton did not see it coming.

“(I was) shocked, surprised,” Wisdom-Hylton said. “Professionally, it was kind of a no-brainer. Obviously (a) legendary coach, great program (and) great university in a great location. … But personally, I needed to make sure that it was for me (and) what I needed to do, and so it was a hard decision.”

Texas hired three new coaches in the off-season, including Blair Schaefer and Elena Lovato. Wisdom-Hylton fills former assistant coach April Phillips’ role on the team after she departed to become the head coach at San Jose State.

In addition to her responsibilities as recruiting coordinator, Wisdom-Hylton is expected to coach post players Aaliyah Moore and Oregon State transfer Taylor Jones. Schaefer touted her ability to coach post players as a reason for her hire when it was announced. 

“We recruit to a fit,” Schaefer said. “That’s not just for my student-athletes.” 

Wisdom-Hylton played her college ball at Purdue, where she ranks second in school history with 968 career rebounds and 281 career blocked shots. She also became the first player in Big Ten conference history to record at least 1,500 points, 900 rebounds, 300 steals and 200 blocks in a career. In fact, she actually got her first taste of coaching during her time in West Lafayette.

 “I tore my ACL going into my senior year of college, (and) all I could do was sit from the sidelines and coach,” Wisdom-Hylton said. “I was like, ‘This isn’t too bad.’”

After her time at Purdue, the forward was selected in the first round of the 2009 WNBA Draft by the Los Angeles Sparks. She also played professionally overseas after her WNBA career, winning two gold medals with USA Basketball in 2006 and 2007. 

Playing professionally was a dream of Wisdom-Hylton’s since she was a kid. She said her mother found some notes that she wrote herself when she was little that said she wanted to play professional basketball one day. How she wanted to achieve her goal, however, was a question she didn’t know the answer to until she met with Purdue’s coaching staff in high school.

“I really connected with (former Purdue head coach Kristy Curry) and her assistants, so I felt like I could trust them,” Wisdom-Hylton said. “She kind of had that motherly figure, and she was from down south, so she had a little accent. So, I really felt comfortable going to school and playing for her.” 

Today, Wisdom-Hylton hopes to fill a similar role for prospective recruits considering Texas.

“I try to find what really gets them excited, especially outside of basketball,” Wisdom-Hylton said. “Everyone that I’m talking to is good at basketball, but there’s other things about them that I try to find out about and really connect on a different level.”

As Wisdom-Hylton begins her role at Texas, her greatest asset as a coach might not be her years of collegiate and professional experience or her past experience as a coach at Wisconsin and Boston College. It could be her ability to relate with her student athletes and advise them on topics beyond the court.

“The ball will stop bouncing one day,” Wisdom-Hylton said. “(I’m) helping them try to navigate life, whether that is basketball or not.”