IU Northwest Announces Jesse Ford as New Head Women’s Basketball Coach
GARY, Ind. — Indiana University Northwest Director of Athletics Ryan Shelton has announced the hiring of Jesse Ford, the campus’s new head women’s basketball coach. Ford arrives to IU Northwest after spending the past four seasons at Fisher College, an NAIA program located in Boston.
“We are thrilled to have Jesse assume leadership of our women’s basketball program,” Shelton said. “Having competed against his teams in our previous conference, I have long admired the success and culture he quickly established in turning-around a struggling program and building his teams into consistent winners with sustained success.”
Ford replaces Shelton, who stepped aside after 14 seasons as head coach of the women’s basketball program.
“Jesse is a very talented coach with great enthusiasm and passion for the game, but also values student academic success and the student-athlete experience,” Shelton added. “His experience, success, and proven leadership skills make him the perfect choice to continue our strong tradition in women’s basketball.”
Ford brings more than a decade of college coaching experience, mostly at the NAIA-level. Prior to coaching Fisher College’s women’s basketball, he was an assistant coach for Fisher College’s men’s basketball program, and served as the associate men’s basketball head coach in his final season.
“It’s the student-athletes themselves that will make the upcoming years so special and I am excited to get started with them and our new staff along with the continued support of Ryan Shelton and the IU Northwest community. I would like to thank Ryan Shelton and Chancellor Iwama for this incredible opportunity, I can’t wait to get started,” Ford said.
“In terms of talent and competitiveness, IU Northwest women’s basketball has a strong history of tradition and success and continued on an upward trajectory in its recent years,” Ford added. “I am fortunate to be able to step in at this time and continue to build upon that success.”
During the 2018-19 season, Fisher College had their best regular-season record after finishing with a 19-10 record and second consecutive trip to the A.I.I. Post-Season Conference Tournament. The program also ranked number one in the country in defensive field goal percentage, three-point percentage, and fifth in overall scoring defense.
Ford got his start in coaching at the University of Idaho as he was an undergraduate student assistant for the women’s basketball programs during the 2008-09 and 2009-10 seasons.
IU Northwest women’s basketball is set to begin their third season in the highly competitive Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Friday, October 28-Saturday, October 29 as the RedHawks compete in the Rick and Mira Panella Stritch Classic hosted by Cardinal Stritch University in Milwaukee.
Last season, the RedHawks advanced to the CCAC Tournament Semifinals. The team returns six lettermen, led by All-Conference junior forward Michaela Schmidt.