San Francisco State hires recent national champion women’s basketball coach 

Dennis Cox, who guided Clayton State to the 2011 NCAA Division II national championship, was named women’s basketball coach at San Francisco State, the school announced Tuesday.

In 10 seasons at the Morrow, Ga., school in suburban Atlanta, Cox went 267-57 and is the winningest active Division II coach and seventh-winningest over all three divisions.

Under Cox, the Lakers were 22-7 last season after an impressive 96-6 run over three seasons that included a 35-1 record and a national championship in the 2010-11 season and a 32-1 record in 2012-13, losing their only game in the Elite Eight. Clayton State opened the 2011-12 season as the No. 1 team in the nation.

Joaquin Wallace resigned after a 14-14 season at San Francisco State.

“We are thrilled to welcome Dennis to SF State as the leader of our women’s basketball program,” SFSU athletic director Charles Guthrie said in a statement released by the school. “Our goal is to build a championship caliber program that contends for [California Collegiate Athletic Association] titles and NCAA Tournament berths on an annual basis. I believe that Dennis brings the experience and vision that will allow the Gators to reach new heights.”

The Gators’ .500 season was the first time they reached that mark in five seasons, which include 8-20 and 6-20 marks in the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons, respectively.

“It’s an opportunity to build another program,” Cox said in a statement released by Clayton State. “Sometimes you have to step out of your comfort zone to grow. It’s going to be an adventure. It reminds me of when I came here.”

Riordan star signs with Gators: Chiefy Ugbaja, who helped lead Riordan to the CIF Division 3 state semifinals, has signed a national letter of intent to play for the San Francisco State men’s basketball team.

Ugbaja averaged 16.1 points, 8.1 rebounds and 2.6 steals per game as a senior, leading the Crusaders to a 19-12 record. He was named first-team All-West Catholic Athletic League.

Cousin Jiday Ugbaja signed a letter of intent with Sacramento State in the spring.

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