Smith resigns from women’s basketball team, Roysland hired as assistant

by John Hageman

The Minnesota women’s basketball team announced Thursday that associate head coach Barb Smith resigned from her post after six seasons with the team, and former Gophers standout Kelly Roysland will become an assistant with the team.

The coaching moves come less than a month before the season starts.

“We were very fortunate to have Barb’s experience, passion and knowledge at Minnesota,” Minnesota head coach Pam Borton said in a statement. “I appreciate everything she has done for Minnesota basketball. She has been an asset to the program in her six years here and we are sad to see her go, but wish her the best in her very bright future. I wish her nothing but the best.”

Roysland joins the Gophers after spending the past two seasons as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at North Dakota State. In her playing days, Roysland was a captain and named the Gophers’ most valuable player in her senior season in 2007. Roysland is one of just three former Gophers to have a scholarship endowed in her name along with Lindsay Whalen and Carol Ann Shudlick.

As an assistant, Roysland will mainly work with the guards and recruiting. 

“Minnesota is a place that I absolutely love,” Roysland said in a statement. “I grew up loving The Barn, and then had a chance to play there. Now I get to work with the current players and to continue the winning tradition at Minnesota. It’s something I’m very honored and humbled to be a part of again.”

The Gophers kick off their season with the Hoops U event at Williams Arena Sunday at 12:30 p.m. Their first exhibition game against Southwest Minnesota State is scheduled for Nov. 3 at Williams Arena.