Assistant Coach, 2005-13
Debbie Black is beginning her eighth season as an assistant coach for the Buckeyes in 2012-13.
She rejoined Jim Foster's coaching staff after closing out a stellar 18-season professional career in 2005. Black, who played for Foster at St. Joseph's from 1985-88, is in her second stint as an assistant with her former mentor. She previously coached with Foster in 1999-2000 at Vanderbilt. During her tenure, Black has helped the Buckeyes land several top recruits while assisting in the development of several Buckeye guards over the years.
Last season Black oversaw one of the top backcourts in the nation in Samantha Prahalis, Tayler Hill and Amber Stokes. Prahalis took home USBWA All-America and Big Ten player of the year honors and joined Hill on the first team All-Big Ten squad while Stokes took home Big Ten defensive player of the year honors. In April, Prahalis was chosen sixth overall in the WNBA Draft by the Phoenix Mercury.
In 2011 Black helped mentor sophomore guard Tayler Hill to Big Ten all-defensive team honors while helping point guard Samantha Prahalis lead the Big Ten in assists for the second straight year. The year prior, Prahalis led the Big Ten and finished in the top 5 nationally in assists while earning first team all-Big Ten honors.
In 2008-09, Black helped two of her guards win Big Ten individual honors as Little repeated as defensive player of the year while rookie Samantha Prahalis won freshman of the year honors after leading all freshmen in scoring (10.2 ppg) and leading all players with 5.8 assists per game. Prahalis would go onto win first team All-Big Ten honors in 2009-10 while Little was named to the all-defensive team for the third consecutive year.
In 2007-08 Black helped Shavelle Little flourish into the best on-the-ball defender in the conference as Little took home Big Ten defensive player of the year honors as a sophomore while leading the league in steals.
In 2006-07, Black helped break in a pair of freshmen point guards. Black mentored Maria Moeller, a starter in all 32 games, to rank third in the Big Ten in assist-to-turnover. Little was not far behind Moeller that year, playing in 29 games and pocketing 41 steals.
In Black's first season with the Buckeyes in 2005-06, the former WNBA Defensive Player of the Year guided Ohio State guard Kim Wilburn to 2006 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year honors.
Black ended her professional career April 13, 2005, retiring from the Connecticut Sun of the WNBA. She also played with Miami and Utah of the WNBA after All-Star seasons with the Colorado Xplosion of the American Basketball League. With the Xplosion, Black recorded a rare feat with a quadruple-double against the Atlanta Glory Dec. 8, 1996 when she scored 10 points, handed out 12 assists, pulled down 14 rebounds and recorded 10 steals.
In the all-time WNBA records book, Black retired ranked No. 8 in career steals (315) and tied for 10th in assists (612). Black also is first all-time in career steal-to-turnover ratio and fourth in career steals per game (2.26). She was the WNBA Defensive Player of the Year with the Miami Sol in 2001. She finished her ABL career as the all-time leader in steals (330) and ranked second in assists (608) and was named 1997 ABL Defensive Player of the Year.
At St. Joseph's, Black helped lead the Hawks to two Big 5 championships and an Atlantic 10 title. A native of Philadelphia, Black completed her collegiate career ranked as St. Joe's all-time career leader in assists (718) and steals (572). A multi-sport athlete, Black earned 12 varsity letters in basketball, field hockey and softball. She reaped many awards on the court, including 1988 All-District and All-Atlantic 10 Conference First Team honors after being named second-team all-league in 1986 and to the All-Rookie team in 1985. She was inducted into the Philadelphia Big Five Hall of Fame in 1995, the St. Joseph's Basketball Hall of Fame in 1994 and the St. Joseph's Athletic Hall of Fame in 2000.
2005-present:Ohio State Assistant Coach
1999-00: Vanderbilt Assistant Coach
1985-88: St. Joseph's University (Head Coach Jim Foster)
1989-96: Hobart Islanders (Australian Professional Team)
1996-98: Colorado Xplosion (American Basketball League)
1999: Utah Starzz (Women's National Basketball Association)
2000-02: Miami Sol (WNBA)
2001: Sicilian Professional Team
2003-04: Connecticut Sun (WNBA)