Minnesota Lynx star Lindsay Whalen is picking up a second job. The Women’s National Basketball Association player is going to start coaching. She will not, however, be giving up her playing career.
Whalen, who is 35 years old, is being hired to coach at the University of Minnesota. She will continue playing for the Minnesota Lynx of the WNBA as well.
The hire is still pending approval of the school board, but most expect it to pass. Whalen will become the first active WNBA player to also coach at the college level.
While playing at Minnesota, Whalen became one of the school’s most exceptional talents. She was the first player in the school’s history to earn three All-American selections. She left as the leading scorer in program history.
Her college success followed her to the WNBA as well. She has played 14 seasons in the league. Whalen played six seasons for the Connecticut Suns before moving on to the Lynx for the last eight campaigns.
Lindsay Whalen To Coach Minnesota Lynx
Whalen is averaging 11.0 points per game across 448 career contests in the WNBA. The league honored her as an All-Star five times. Last season she totaled 8 points, 4.1 assists, and 2.5 rebounds per game in 22 games.
It is unknown how her involvement in the WNBA will affect her coaching at this time. The potential conflict between the league and the college season, and recruiting, will be a unique challenge for the new coach.
Despite the new territory, Minnesota’s administration is excited about the future. The school’s athletic director, Mark Coyle, praised Wahlen in a statement.
He commended her work ethic, determination, and possession of the “it” factor. Coyle cited Whalen’s experience of playing for elite coaches as a huge plus.
She obviously knows what it takes to not only compete but succeed at both the college and professional levels. If she’s as successful at coaching as she is at playing, bright days are coming for Minnesota.