COLUMBIA -- Allen University director of athletics Dr. Jerome Fitch named Toccara Tatum as the new head women's basketball coach.
Tatum, a native of North and former standout at North High School, is bringing her talents home to South Carolina to lead the Lady Yellow Jackets women’s basketball program. She comes to Allen after three years at Piedmont International University, where she served as the head coach. She has 19 years of experience with girls' basketball across the Carolinas.
“Ms. Tatum has a strong history with women’s basketball on and off of the court,” said Dr. Ernest McNealey, Allen University president. “Her dedication to student-athletes and her track record of paving new pathways for women athletes will serve our women’s basketball program well as we take on NCAA Division II.
"I want to thank the Dr. Ernest McNealey, Dr. Jerome Fitch and the Athletic Committee for the opportunity to lead the Lady Yellow Jackets and be a part of the AU family as we transition into the NCAA Division II," Tatum said.
Tatum earned her bachelor of science in business administration, with an emphasis in marketing, from Ferrum College in 2005. She then earned a master of science in sports management with a concentration in athletic administration from Southern New Hampshire University.
Prior to her coaching career, Tatum was a distinguished player when she was at Ferrum, receiving a host of awards including WBCA Division III All American, 2005 NCAA Division III National Assist Leader, USA South Player of the Year and VaSID All-State Women's Basketball First Team.
Her talents took her on to semipro basketball, where she played for the San Jose Spiders in the Women’s National Basketball League before the league’s dismantling.
Allen University currently sponsors 11 intercollegiate programs and was selected as the newest provisional member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II effective for the 2020-21 academic year in July 2020.
The Lady Jackets will open their season on Jan. 9 at home against Albany State University.