Former Tennessee State University women’s basketball graduates Simone Hopes and Chelsea Hudson made tremendous achievements during their careers as Lady Tigers, and they are continuing that success today.
Hopes (2009-13) and Hudson (2011-15) were both dominating post players for the Lady Tigers and each earned the prestigious award of TSU Female Athlete of the Year following their senior campaign.
As a senior, Hopes averaged 11.3 points per game while leading the team in rebounds with 7.2 per outing. The Houston, Texas native helped TSU to a winning record in the OVC for the first time in three years.
After Hopes' departure, Hudson stepped into the role of a starter. In her final season as a Lady Tiger, she guided Tennessee State to its first OVC Tournament Championship and NCAA Tournament berth in 20 years. A two-time All-OVC Second Team selection, she led the team in scoring and rebounding while also earning OVC All-Tournament team honors.
Hopes graduated with a bachelor of science in Chemistry while Hudson was able to earn a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Education from Tennessee State. Following their success on the court and in the classroom at TSU, these two set their sights on new goals.
Hopes recently completed the requirements to receive her medical degree from AACC/UMB Collaborative Physician Assistant Program in May. Upon graduation, she will finish her rotation at Johns Hopkins Hospital and will work as a Plastics and Reconstructive Surgery PA in Houston.
While Simone is pursuing a career in the medical field, Chelsea is using her basketball knowledge to educate the next generation of ballers.
Hudson is currently serving as an assistant women’s basketball coach at Pearl-Cohn High School. In her first season, she helped guide the Lady Firebirds to a State Championship appearance (runner up), District 10-AA Tournament Championship and District 10-AA Regular Season Title. For her efforts, she was named the District 10-AA Assistant Coach of the Year.
"I enjoy helping young ladies improve their game as they grow as women,” commented Hudson. “This award just is a reminder that I'm doing what I'm supposed to be doing. Basketball is an awesome tool to meet and encounter awesome people. I’m thankful for my Pearl family."
These two young women highlight only a small fraction of the accomplishments that TSU Lady Tiger alums have made beyond the court over the years.
"Seeing my fellow Lady Tigers succeed is an amazing feeling," Hudson continued. Watching them graduate, grow as women and even marry is a beautiful thing. Being a Lady Tiger isn't easy. So I believe it has naturally helped build us to be strong and successful women. I'm proud to be a Lady Tiger."