The Trojans are back in the Big Dance for the first time since 2006 after winning Pac-12 Tournament Championship.
Cynthia Cooper-Dyke brings in Chyanne Butler, McKenzie Calvert, Amy Okonkwo and Kristen Simon for next year.
Trojans are looking for their most successful season start in 15 years when they take on the Aztecs at 4 p.m.
Trojans travel to UC Davis on Friday and face Fresno State on Sunday to kick off new era under Cynthia Cooper.
Cynthia Cooper is back in town, and she and the Women of Troy are ready to start believing this Friday at Galen Center.
Brandy Manning joins the Trojan staff after serving one season as an associate head coach and four seasons as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Arizona. Highly regarded as a standout coach, scout and recruiter, he also served as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for one season at Central Florida. Before that, he coached a Murray State and Louisville.
"One of the things I really wanted was to bring in some strong recruiters and people who were really strong teachers of basketball, because I really like to teach basketball," USC head coach Cynthia Cooper-Dyke said. "Brandy is so well-rounded in his ability to coach Xs and Os and recruit. He is just phenomenal at teaching, motivating and recruiting."
Manning joined the Arizona staff in 2008-09 and helped lead the Wildcats to their first postseason appearance since the 2004-05 season when Arizona earned a spot in the 2011 Women's National Invitation Tournament. The following year, the Wildcats' 11-1 start to the 2011-12 season was the best in program history since 1999-2000. The Wildcats beat UCLA twice in 2012, marking Arizona's first wins over the Bruins since 2006-07.
While Manning was at Arizona, the Wildcats improved from 12 wins in 2008-09, to 14 wins in 2009-10, to 21 wins in 2010-11. In Pac-10 play, Arizona improved from four wins in 2008-09, to six wins in 2009-10, to 10 wins in 2010-11. The Wildcats' 10-8 conference record for the 2010-11 season was their best since the 2004-05 campaign and their 21 wins overall was the most since the 2003-04 season. The 2010-11 season also marked the highest finish in the Pac-10 for Arizona (fourth), since tying for the Pac-10 regular-season crown in 2004.
On the recruiting side, Manning has been responsible for adding many stellar student-athletes to his programs. While at Central Florida, he assembled a class of eight recruits who would be largely responsible for driving the Knights to the 2009 and 2011 Conference USA championships as well as their first NCAA Tournament appearance in 10 years. At Arizona, Manning was instrumental in bringing in another talented crop of players, including 2010 Pac-10 Freshman of the Year and the recent 16th pick in the 2013 WNBA Draft, Davellyn Whyte.
Manning joined Central Florida from Murray State, where he helped the Racers to a 21-10 record and a bid in the 2007 Women's National Invitation Tournament, marking just the second-ever postseason appearance for the program. Manning spent two years as a graduate assistant coach at the Louisville from 2003-05. During that time, the Cardinals posted a record of 42-19 and advanced to the 2005 Conference USA Championship game. Louisville earned a berth to the NCAA Tournament in 2005 after participating in the WNIT the season prior.
Manning, a native of Stockton, Calif., graduated from Clark Atlanta in 2002 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology. He also holds a master's degree in education from Louisville. He and his wife, Nakaya, have sons Brandyn and Quintyn.