Tiffany Jackson, a Texas Longhorn basketball legend and a former WNBA 1st round pick, has passed away, reports CBS News. She was 37.
She succumbed to breast cancer after a seven-year battle.
Her former coach, Hall of Famer Jody Conradt, lauded Jackson as one of the best players in the history of the Texas Longhorns.
"Tiffany had a great career and was an impact player," Conradt said in a statement. "She was recognized for her all-around game and the fact that she was tremendously mobile and could play multiple positions. She was beloved by teammates, and we share in the sadness of her passing."
"We are deeply saddened to hear the news of the passing of Tiffany Jackson, one of the greatest players in the history of Texas Women's Basketball," added Texas Head Coach Vic Schaefer. "From her days as a player for DFW Elite to her days as a player at The University of Texas, Tiffany has meant so much to so many people in this great state of Texas. I know she was so excited to be the head coach at Wiley College for the upcoming season. She will be sorely missed by so many. Our deepest sympathies go out to her family."
After a stellar high school career at Duncanville High School in Duncanville, Texas, where she was a High School All-American, Jackson was a standout star at Texas Longhorn. In her debut season, she was named the National Freshman of the Year by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association and Big-12 Freshman of the year. She became the only player in Longhorns' women's basketball history with 1,000 points, 1,000 rebounds, 300 steals and 150 blocks in four seasons.
In 2007, she was drafted by the New York Liberty with the No. 5 overall pick and played three seasons there before she was traded to the Tulsa Shock in 2010. The following season, she had her best year as a pro when she averaged 12.4 points and 8.4 rebounds. Eventually, she would join later the Los Angles Sparks.
In 2013, Jackson earned a degree in Applied Learning and Development from The University of Texas.
After being diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer in 2015, Jackson returned for her last season with Los Angeles in 2017 before retiring at age 32. Following her retirement, she was an assistant coach at Texas for two seasons.
In April, she was named the head coach at Wiley College.
The WNBA paid tribute to Jackson in a post on Twitter.
"We are saddened to learn of the passing of a member of our WNBA family, Tiffany Jackson," the tweet read. "Our thoughts and prayers are with Tiffany's family."
We at EBONY offer our prayers and deepest condolences to the family and friends of Tiffany Jackson,