Valerie Boothe is in her 16th season as head coach of the Ole Miss rifle program. The only coach in school history, Boothe was hired prior to the start of the 1996-97 season when rifle became a varsity sport at Ole Miss.
"Valerie is a hard worker who is very passionate about the sport of rifle," Executive Associate Athletics Director, Lynnette Johnson says. "Her loyalty and dedication have been very obvious over the past 13 years. She is well-respected in her sport and continues to work to maintain our program in the national spotlight.
"This program was built from the ground up and all of the credit goes to Valerie. She has been quick to assemble one of the most respected programs in the country. We are very proud to have her as our head coach and I am excited about our team this year."
From the start, Boothe had a vision. Knowing that the program would begin as a work-in-progress, she was willing to put in the time and effort for a chance at having long-term success. Now, as the team prepares for its 16th season, it seems as if Boothe's long hours, positive attitude and patience have paid off. The program enters the 2012-13 campaign with a strong foundation of seven letterwinners returning and an eye towards earning an berth in the NCAA Championships.
"We have a very talented group returning for this season as well as a fresh face to the team. We know what we want out of this season and will work until we get it," said Boothe.
Last season, Boothe guided sophomore Abbey Stanec to the school's second, second place finish at the NCAA Championships. In 15 seasons at Ole Miss, Boothe has helped several individuals to a variety of accolades. In 2008, Shannon Wilson became the second Rebel to win a conference title when she claimed the smallbore crown at the GARC Championships. Jennifer Lorenzen claimed the combined title just one year before. Two All-American in the last season as well as nine Academic All-American.
Boothe also guided current Rebels Keely Stankey and Erica Swanson to top-10 finishes in the air rifle at the 2009 U.S. Junior Olympics. She has tutored numerous athletes to success at the Junior Olympic level, including helping lead Wilson to gold in the smallbore at the 2006 U.S. Junior Olympics.
Under Boothe's watch, Ole Miss Rifle had its most successful season ever in 2005-2006. The Rebels earned their first ever appearance in the NCAA Championships, attained the program's first NCAA sectional victory and saw Ole Miss set or tie school records for team aggregate, air rifle and smallbore scoring, as well as individual air rifle and smallbore marks. Shannon Wilson was named the program's first first-team All-American by the National Rifle Association and Jennifer Lorenzen picked up her second consecutive All-America honor. In all Boothe's club has received seven All-American Awards. In 2006, Boothe was recognized as National Coach of the Year by the Collegiate Rifle Coaches Association.
The program has continued to excel both at the range and in the classroom as evidenced by the fact that Boothe has coached 32 different student-athletes to All-Academic honors. Last season, eight players including six returners-Coffey, Goodwin,Virginia Holman, Quartarone, Stankey and Alivia Yeager earned College Rifle Coaches' Association All-Academic honors.
In 2008, Casey Phillips earned second-team ESPN The Magazine/CoSIDA Academic All-America honors, the first such honor in program history. Phillips, a Phi Beta Kappa scholar, graduated with a perfect 4.0 GPA.
A native of Livingston, Tenn., Boothe was a collegiate shooter at UT-Martin from 1992 to 1996. She won the Tennessee State Smallbore title in 1994 in addition to capturing four Tennessee State Air Rifle championships from 1993 to 1996. Boothe also competed in the Junior Olympics on four different occasions.
Boothe has served as a member of several national committees, including the NCAA Rifle Committee from 2002-07 and NRA Collegiate Programs Committee. After serving as the NCAA's interim chairperson in 2003-04, Boothe was promoted to full-time chair the following year and now is serving as a committee chair on the NCAA Committee.
Boothe earned a bachelor's degree in social work from Ole Miss in 1997. She also holds an NRA coaches certification and is a member of the Oxford-University Methodist Church.
She and her husband, Christopher, reside in Oxford and have two daughters -- Sarah and Olivia.
It was exciting news this week as Rebel favorite Tom Luke returned to the Ole Miss football program as Assistant A.D. for Player Development. A second-generation Rebel and the brother of fellow Ole Miss standout and staffer Matt Luke, Tom... read more
A little more than a year into his first term as Ole Miss Athletics Director, Ross Bjork made his first trip to Starkville this week but did so for a good cause. Bjork and Bulldog AD Scott Stricklin joined forces... read more
Despite losing the All-American twin duo of Marcel and Chris Thiemann and playing in the toughest conference in America, Ole Miss finished the 2013 regular season with a ranking of No. 7 in the nation.The regular season was highlighted by... read more
Injuries have riddled the Ole Miss football team this spring, and after evaluating the situation this week, the coaching staff determined a full scale scrimmage would not be an option for this year's BancorpSouth Grove Bowl. As a result, the... read more
Former Ole Miss All-Americans and collegiate top-10 doubles duo Kristi Boxx and Abby Guthrie have reunited to compete in the $25,000 USTA St. Dominic Pro Circuit women's event in Jackson. The event, which began Sunday, will run through April 7... read more
Panama Trip Photo GalleryTwo weeks ago, I wrote about a group of six Ole Miss football players who went on a mission trip to Panama over spring break. They have since returned to Oxford and been knee-deep in schoolwork and... read more
Ole Miss' run to the SEC Tournament title and the Big Dance received national coverage for the team and university during the March Madness. Below is just a sampling of mountain of press the Rebels have gotten including a tweet from King... read more
Michaela Quinn, a member of the 2013 Ole Miss track & field signing class, turned in a great performance at the World Junior Cross Country Championships over the weekend.Competing as a member of Team Australia, Quinn placed 25th in the... read more
Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 Colton Walls, a sophomore linebacker who started his career at Clemson, is among the non-scholarship players to join the Ole Miss football team this spring. Rebel fans will be quite... read more
A long list of ex-Rebels are planning to work out for the NFL scouts at Ole Miss Pro Day on Thursday. Of the 21 former players putting their talents on display, 16 concluded their Rebel careers in the fall, while... read more
It seems like just yesterday we were celebrating a bowl win in Birmingham. Now that that and an historic signing day are in the rear view mirror, it's time to gear up for spring drills. The Rebels take to the... read more
Ryan Smith, a sophomore distance runner on the Ole Miss track & field team, will be a sports trivia contestant on an upcoming segment of ESPNU's late-night entertainment show, UNITE.The episode of UNITE airs late Wednesday night at 1 a.m.... read more
The much anticipated list of walk out songs is here. Click on the song to hear it. Viewer discretion advised. Songs played in venue will be edited. My personal favorite has to be Mistone's with the Latin flavor. #1 Preston... read more
Olympic gold medalist and former Ole Miss star Brittney Reese will be among the headliner athletes at this weekend's Millrose Games indoor meet in New York City.Reese, who won gold in the long jump at the 2012 London Olympics, is... read more