NORMAN, Okla. — The Sooners officially introduced Jennie Baranczyk as the program’s ninth head women’s basketball coach in a Tuesday afternoon press conference. She replaces the legendary Sherri Coale, who retired following the season, and has immediately been greeted with quite the reception.
“Well, you should have seen my son’s face there when those [Jordan shoes] were presented, and my daughter got taken out,” Baranczyk said. “So, hello Norman! Honestly, it is an honor and a privilege to be here, and I couldn’t be more proud to be the head coach for the Oklahoma Sooners.
“This is a tremendous program with a strong foundation developed by much-admired coach in Sherri Coale. And I’d like to begin by thanking President Joe Harroz and Athletic Director Joe Castiglione—I’m getting a little emotional, so I’m sorry; this means a lot to me—for entrusting in your leadership in leading this program. This truly touches my heart, and I couldn’t be more proud to be able to be here.
“I fell in love with the game of basketball when I was a little sister tagging along to my older sister’s practices at St. Pius grade school in Des Moines, Iowa. And back then there were no girls’ teams, and so I joined the boys’ teams at the local YMCA. And I loved every second of it. I love basketball. And there’s nothing better than being a part of a team, because when you’re a part of a team, you get to work together for something great. And we did that when I played at Iowa. We did that at Drake. And we’re going to do that here.
“You’ll hear me talk a lot about love because for me love is the strongest human emotion that we have. And I love this game, and I want every person that’s associated with our program to not only feel that love, [but] I want them to love it that much, too. And that’s the message that we’ve talked about as a team.