Richardson to be Tulsa coach, GM

Updated: September 28, 2009, 7:56 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Usually, you need a team to have a coach. Not this time.

On Tuesday, Nolan Richardson will be named coach and general manager of the proposed WNBA franchise in Tulsa, Okla., an investor group said in a statement on Monday.

The move was first reported by ESPN analyst Nancy Lieberman-Cline.

In July, investors announced a plan to bring a WNBA franchise to Tulsa. It is unknown whether Tulsa would get an expansion team or whether an existing team would relocate to the city. The group was recently given an extension by WNBA commissioner Donna Orender to line up funding.

Richardson, who won the 1994 NCAA championship at Arkansas, was fired by the Razorbacks in 2002. He later coached national teams from Panama and Mexico. He puts a face on the franchise as the investor group attempts to get commitments on arena suites, tickets and advertising. He is a resident of Tulsa.

Tulsa, with about 385,000 people, would be the second-smallest city with a WNBA franchise -- after Uncasville, Conn. Orender said in July that other cities were being considered by the league, but did not reveal which ones were in the running.

The team would play at the BOK Center, which holds about 18,000 and opened last year.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.