UTEP to WSU: Asia Henderson followed Keitha Adams to Wichita


Kylie Cameron

Redshirt-freshman Asia Henderson keeps her eye on the ball.

Asia Henderson didn’t originally plan to attend Wichita State.

Henderson, a redshirt freshman, was fully committed to UTEP going into her freshman year — in no small part because of Keitha Adams, then UTEP head coach.

Henderson was attached to the coaching staff and was “excited to get started” there. That’s when Adams decided to take the head coach vacancy at Wichita State. Henderson immediately knew she would follow Adams to WSU.

“I was nervous about getting an entirely new coaching staff,” Henderson said. “I was attached to them, and even though I hadn’t started yet, I just felt like I had to go with her.”

Henderson said Adams is trying to morph her into a big inside presence for the future.

“She’s trying to get me better with all the typical big girl stuff,” Henderson said. “Whether that’s finishing on the inside or boxing out and getting rebounds — all the basic post play.”

Henderson said she’s starting to feel a lot more comfortable on the floor. She “loves that everyone’s knew” because “it will help with chemistry down the road.”

“It has really forced me to step out of my comfort zone,” Henderson said. “I feel a lot more comfortable with my teammates. Everyone’s new, but we still mesh really well together.”

Henderson said the team is becoming very disciplined going into the season. She praised Adams’ “scare tactics.”

“Her scare tactics work for sure,” Henderson said. “She has a fresh group coming in, so everyone has to listen to her. Once we get on the same page as Coach, we will be like a conveyer belt — everything will be flowing.”

Henderson said Adams unique way of talking endears her to the team.

“She uses a lot of quotes,” Henderson said. “They’re like country quotes, too. My personal favorite is, ‘faster than a cat on a hot tin roof.’ She says crazy stuff all of the time, like bird-dog, and a bunch of country stuff. It’s great.”

Henderson said she’s confident Adams can raise the profile of women’s basketball at WSU.

“She’s a marketing machine,” Henderson said. “She’s going to get more fans in here for our games, and with a new group, we can prove people wrong.”

One day, Henderson hopes women’s basketball at Wichita State can get to where the men’s program is at.

“Everything shuts down for men’s games,” Henderson said. “Our boys are phenomenal. I give them credit, but I hope one day, we can get there where we can get study halls shut down and our parking lots filled.”