Mike Nicholson begins his third season as an assistant coach for Jennies basketball in 2016-17.
Prior to coming to UCM, Nicholson was an assistant coach for the men's team at Missouri Western under former UCM head coach Tom Smith.
Nicholson spent 14 seasons over two stints as the top assistant at Missouri Western, most recently from 2007-2013. During his time in St. Joseph, he helped the Griffons to 228 wins, three MIAA regular season championships, a pair of MIAA Tournament titles and five appearances in the NCAA-II Tournament. He helped in the development of two All-Americans, two MIAA MVPs and 11 All-MIAA players.
Before his time at Missouri Western, he spent six seasons as an assistant coach at Division I Missouri-Kansas City. Under the tutelage of Lee Hunt and former Mules coach Bob Sundvold, Nicholson developed a philosophy and understanding of what makes for a successful player and program at the collegiate level. He was a member of the staff that led the UMKC Kangaroos to the most wins in Division I in school history and he also played a role in the development of Tony Dumas, drafted in the first round (19th overall) by the Dallas Mavericks in the 1995 NBA Draft.
Nicholson played one season of college basketball at Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln, before transferring to the University of Missouri where he received his degree in Business Administration in 1990. Nicholson received his master's degree in Educational Administration from UMKC in 1994.
Mike and wife, Lisa, have two boys, Jake and Joe.
Tammy Slifer begins her 20th season as an assistant coach for her husband.
Slifer spent the past 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons as head coach of the Warrensburg High School girls basketball team.
Prior to her role as assistant at Missouri Western, she was the head girls coach at Linn-Mar High School in Marion, Iowa from 1989-95.
Slifer received her bachelor’s degree from Eastern Illinois University in 1985 and played collegiately at Black Hawk East Community College in Kewanee, Ill. and at Mount Mercy College. Her 1981-82 team finished second in the AIAW with a 24-11 overall record. She finished her career at Black Hawk East as the school’s all-time leading scorer.
The Slifer's have three children: daughters Brittney and Maggie, and son D.J. Brittney played for the Jennies from 2008-10 and D.J. played for the Mules from 2009-12, and is currently the Assistant Women’s Basketball Coach at Texas A&M Kingsville.
Graduate Assistant Coach
Kenzie Williams joins Central Missouri as the Women's Basketball Graduate Assistant Coach in 2016-17.
Williams graduated from Missouri State in 2016 where she played four years for the Lady Bears, making over 100 career starts. She was a three-time All-Missouri Valley Conference selection and named First Team All-MVC in 2015 and 2016. Williams finished her career with 1,645 points, seventh all-time at MSU. She is also ninth in steals (212), sixth in three-pointers made (184), fifth in three-point attempts (517) and tenth in both free throws made (345) and free throw attempts (444). In four years, Williams also grabbed 566 rebounds, dished out 320 assists and blocked 52 shots. She is one of only three players in MSU history with 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 200 steals, 200 assists and 50 blocks in a career.
As a senior, Williams was ninth in the MVC scoring 14 points per game and handing out 2.8 assists per game. Her .391 three-point percentage was third in the conference and .783 free throw percentage was sixth. She was also sixth in steals with 1.7 swipes per game. Williams had a streak of 34 straight free throws made in 2015-16, second-longest in MSU history and seventh in Missouri Valley Conference history.
In the classroom, Williams was just the third Lady Bear to earn First Team MVC Scholar-Athlete honors. She was the 2015 MVC Women's Basketball Scholar-Athlete of the Year, the MVC Elite 18 Award winner and the MSU co-Outstanding Female Athlete. She made the Missouri Valley Conference Honor Roll all four years and three time's received the Missouri Valley Conference Commissioner's Academic Excellence Award.
Williams attended Mt. Vernon High School in Mt. Vernon, Mo. where she was a two-time All-State selection and took home a Missouri Class 3 state championship as a junior.
She graduated from Missouri State with a degree in Elementary Education and is currently working towards a Master's Degree in Educational Technology.