The Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2019 was inducted over the weekend. The group was officially welcomed at a dinner Friday in the Ohio Union and introduced to the crowd at halftime of the Buckeye football game Saturday in Ohio Stadium.
Jim Foster coached 11 seasons at Ohio State from 2002-13. He put the women’s basketball program back on the map, making the NCAA Tournament in 10 of his 11 seasons. Foster and the Buckeyes also enjoyed a run of six consecutive Big Ten Championships and four Big Ten Tournament titles. His .772 winning percentage (279-82) is the highest of any women’s basketball coach in school history.
Foster helped develop some of the best players in the program’s history. Jessica Davenport (2004-07) was the program’s first three-time All-American. She scored 2,303 points and grabbed 1,094 career rebounds. Jantel Lavender was also a three-time All-American and became the first player, male or female, in the Power 5 conferences to be named conference player of the year four times. Samantha Prahalis was a four-time All-Big Ten point guard. She scored more than 2,000 career points and still holds the Big Ten record with 901 assists which is 11th in NCAA history.
Foster, a Pennsylvania native, also coached at Saint Joseph’s, Vanderbilt and Chattanooga where he amassed 903 career wins which currently ranks seventh in NCAA history. He is the only coach to take four different programs to the NCAA Tournament. Foster was elected to the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame as a member of the class of 2013 and in 2018, after 40 years on the bench, he announced his retirement.