Ollin Dunford joined the Columbia University women's basketball coaching staff as assistant coach in an announcment made by Stephanie Glance in June 2014.
"Ollin comes to Columbia with a reputation of being a great recruiter who also has an ability to develop players,” commented coach Glance. “Those are the top two skills that a great assistant coach should possess. He has high energy and a passion for our game. His character, integrity and sincerity are unmatched. He is a tremendous addition to our program!"
Columbia saw many first fall in Dunford's first season on the bench in 2014-15 as it posted the most victories in five seasons with an 8-20 overall record and 2-12 mark against the Ivies. During non-conference action, Columbia not only played in back-to-back overtime contests for the first time, but won both outings versus Rhode Island (Nov. 24) and Bradley (Nov. 26). To close out of league action, the Lions limited NJIT to 38 points, the fewest points allowed since keeping Skidmore at 32 in December 1986. Records fell throughout conference play as well. On Jan. 24, Columbia held Cornell to 46 points, the fewest points allowed in an Ivy League game since March 4, 2011 vs. Yale (W, 46-42). The Lions downed the Harvard Crimson, 59-43, Feb. 13, for the first time under the roof of Levien Gymnasium in program history. For their efforts, the Lions garnered a program-best seven Ivy League weekly awards highlighted by Camille Zimmerman’s six Rookie of the Week accolades, which is also a program first.
Dunford joins the Columbia staff after a two-year stint with the East Carolina program. The Pirates eclipsed the 20-win mark and reached the Women’s National Invitational Tournament in each of Dunford’s two seasons in Greenville. Dunford had the opportunity to coach two first team All-Conference USA and two all-defensive team selections while with the Pirates.
Prior to his time with ECU, Dunford served as an assistant coach at UNC Wilmington for the 2011-12 campaign. The Seahawks topped 20 wins for the second straight season with Dunford on the sidelines, earning an invitation to the WNIT.
Dunford’s first stop as a full-time assistant came at South Carolina Upstate, where he helped lead the Spartans to the Women’s Basketball Invitational, their first postseason appearance in program history. During his tenure in Spartansburg, Dunford served as the position coach to first team All-Atlantic Sun selection Te’era Copney, and was instrumental in the development of A-Sun Conference Player of the Year, Chelsea McMillian.
Before arriving in Spartanburg, Dunford spent two seasons as a graduate assistant at Virginia Tech, assisting in on-campus recruiting and the day-to-day operations of the Hokies' program.
A two-sport athlete at Mars Hill, Dunford played football and basketball for the Lions and was a four-time academic all-conference team recipient. He earned his Bachelor's degree with a double major in sociology and psychology from Mars Hill College in 2008 and completed his Master's degree in physical health and education at Virginia Tech in 2010.