In 2006, Ms. Jessica Kern attended basketball tryouts in Dallas, Texas in hopes of joining a team in the Women’s Blue Chip Basketball League. Her hard work and earn her a roster spot on the Dallas Dolphins squad. After a strong performance with the Dolphins, Kern was offered opportunities to play professionally in Germany, Romania, and Switzerland.
While overseas, Kern had a chance to coach and train younger players to get a taste of what would become her next step, coaching. Upon returning the United States in 2007, Kern had a deeper understanding of the game of basketball and clear sight of her career goals as she returned to the WBCBL for her second season. During that time, her former team was also undergoing a transformation in the front office. The name of the team was changed to the Arkansas Ballers and just weeks before opening day, the Head Coaching position became vacant. This was a very tough situation for a player in the prime of her game and at the same time, having a huge passion for coaching.
After careful consideration and soul-searching, Kern made a decision to approach the Arkansas Ballers team owners/general managers Gideon and Donzia Acha to plead her case of becoming the new head coach. It wasn’t an easy decision for the Achas to make, as they would be losing a core player in exchange for her to become a first year coach on new level.
The Achas decided to give Kern an opportunity to prove her skills with a roster featuring impact players, such as, DeMoya Williams (Czech Republic, Lindsey Wilson (NCAA2), Frances Carvajal (Finland-D1, Poland) Erika Bobo (University North Texas), Krataura Buckner (Harlem Ambassadors), Maxann Reese (WNBA, Michigan State University), and Tausha Mills (WNBA).
Not only did Kern answer the call, but she also led her team to the 2007 WBCBL West Regional Championship and topped off the season by winning the 2007 WBCBL National Championship.
Since her interview, Ms. Kern has now become the Head coach at Tennessee State University.