Cynthia Lynne Cooper-Dyke (born April 14, 1963) is a former American basketball player who has won championships in college, the Olympics, and in the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA). She is considered by many as one of the greatest women’s basketball players ever. In 2011, she was voted in by fans as one of the Top 15 players in WNBA history. She played for the Houston Comets from 1997–2000 and again in 2003. On April 11, 2013 she was introduced as the head coach for the University of Southern California women’s basketball team. In her first season as head coach at USC, she led the Women of Troy to their first Pac-12 conference championship and consequently, their first NCAA tournament bid since 2006.
Cooper was named to represent the USA at the 1981 William Jones Cup competition in Taipei, Taiwan, while still in high school. The team won seven of eight games to win the silver medal for the event. Cooper scored 2.8 points per game and recorded nine steals.
Cooper was selected to represent the USA at the inaugural Goodwill games, held in Moscow in July 1986. North Carolina State’s Kay Yow served as head coach. The team opened up with a 72–53 of Yugoslavia, and followed that with a 21-point win over Brazil 91–70. The third game was against Czechoslovakia and would be much closer. Cheryl Miller was the scoring leader in this game, scoring 26 points to help the USA to a 78–70 victory.
Cooper played for USA Basketball as part of the 1987 USA Women’s Pan American Team which won a gold medal in Indianapolis, Indiana. Cooper was a member of the gold medalist 1988 US Olympic Women’s Basketball Team., and the Bronze Medal team in 1992.
2011-12 FLEER CYNTHIA COOPER AUTOGRAPHICS
Career highlights and awards
2× WNBA MVP (1997, 1998)
3× WNBA All-Star (1999, 2000, 2003)
4× WNBA champion (1997–2000)
4× WNBA Finals MVP (1997–2000)
3× WNBA scoring champion (1997–1999)
CAA Coach of the Year (2010)
Cooper played for several teams in the European leagues:
Samoa Bétera (Spain) 1986–1987 (36.7 ppg)
Parma (Italy) 1987–1994
Alcamo (Italy) 1994–1996
Competitor for the United States Olympic Games
Gold medal – first place 1988 Seoul
Bronze medal – third place 1992 Barcelona
Pan American Games Gold medal – first place 1987 Indianapolis
FIBA World Championship
Gold medal – first place 1986 Moscow Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 1990 Malaysia
Jones Cup Silver medal – second place 1981 Taipei Team Competition
Assistant Coach for United States
FIBA Under-19 World Championship
Gold medal – first place 2007 Bratislava Team Competition