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Q&A with Trisha Stafford-Odom about her decision to leave North Carolina for Concordia

After leaving Duke for North Carolina in 2011, Trisha Stafford-Odom made another move this offseason to fill the head coaching vacancy at Concordia. Swish Appeal caught up to her to discuss why she made the move and what she thinks about taking a head coaching position.

Former North Carolina assistant Trisha Stafford-Odom (right) is looking to guide a new team this fall.
Former North Carolina assistant Trisha Stafford-Odom (right) is looking to guide a new team this fall.

Swish Appeal: What made you decide to leave North Carolina?

Trisha Stafford-Odom: "My decision to leave North Carolina was ultimately for multiple reasons: Opportunity to gain collegiate head coaching experienc, in my home state was attractive. Going to a highly respected Institution, where the focus is not just sports but where the expectations for me are to establish a women's basketball program to be proud of (and) realization that there was not much movement/advancement within the staff I was part of. Feeling untrusted by administration."

SA: How much are you looking forward to the opportunity of being a head coach?

TSO: "I am excited about the opportunity to be a head coach, but more eager to be able to impact lives on a consistent basis; imparting my own athletic, academic, spiritual, and social philosophies, as well as building my own structure and discipline."

What was it about Concordia that you decided to take the head coaching position?

TSO: "Concordia has a tremendous reputation in the academic world. Similar to why I chose to attend the University of California - Berkeley, it commands respect in various ways. Again, it is located in a familiar area, where living and recruiting will be delightful. The sincerity of the administration in expressing their desire to have me and to support me was attractive. Also, I am attracted to challenges, and I am challenged to lead the women's basketball team into becoming as successful as the surrounding sports."

Describe your time at North Carolina?

TSO: "I appreciated my time at North Carolina. I am grateful to Naismith Hall of Fame Coach Sylvia Hatchell for recognizing special gifts in me and allowing me to use them for the up-building of her program. While my first year there was more about acclimating to the rivalry of my previous place of employment and adjusting to the different styles of play and management, my second year gave room for immediate impact and demands. I was supported and praised by some long time fans of the UNC Women's basketball program who had been waiting to witness the return to glory. I was also envied by others, who were forced to admit I triggered change for the better."

For more on North Carolina, check out our ACC section.