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Former Mississippi State women’s basketball coach Nikki McCray-Penson dead at 51

Photo courtesy of Mississippi State Athletics

Former Mississippi State head women’s basketball coach Nikki McCray-Penson has passed away at the age of 51.

First reported by Robbie Faulk of 247Sports and SuperTalk Mississippi’s Thunder & Lightning, McCray-Penson’s death was confirmed Friday morning.

McCray-Penson’s tenure in Starkville was short as she was only able to coach one season for the Lady Bulldogs, posting a 10-9 overall record during a shortened 2020-21 season. She later resigned, citing health concerns.

Prior to her stint at Mississippi State, McCray-Penson was the head coach at Ole Dominion for three seasons where she amassed a 53-40 overall record.

As a player, McCray-Penson spent her college days under the guidance of the legendary Pat Summit at the University of Tennessee for four seasons. After college, she went on to have a decade-long professional career where she made three WNBA All-Star Game appearances.

Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced. No cause of death has been revealed.

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