After dinner one night this week, Shelly Hoyt raced her daughter Jacie to the car.
Nothing unusual about a little mother-daughter competition, except Jacie, 30, was going to be introduced as UMKC’s next women’s basketball coach the following day.
“My mom is a competitor,” Jacie Hoyt said. “She hates to lose.”
As she stood before her new players, fellow UMKC coaches and administrators during her introduction, Hoyt thanked all of the influential coaches in her life. She started with her mom.
Shelly Hoyt coached her four daughters at Hoxie High in northwest Kansas, where she won 107 consecutive games and four straight Class 1A state championships before moving to Madison High, south of Emporia, in 2016.
The three oldest Hoyt daughters went on to play college basketball with the youngest, Terran, currently playing at Nebraska-Kearney. Jacie started every game at point guard over her final two years at Wichita State before starting a coaching career that took her to Nevada and Kansas State as an assistant.
To see such a strong, hard-working, competitive female growing up, it made me realize it was OK to want to be that person and do what it takes to win. Then to see her come home and be a mom and have that loving, gentle, caring side, it told me you can do both.
Jacie Hoyt on her mother, Shelly
Coaching is the family business. Shelly’s husband, Scott, coached football and track before moving full time into administration.
A mother driven to coaching success had a profound impact on Jacie.
“To see such a strong, hard-working, competitive female growing up, it made me realize it was OK to want to be that person and do what it takes to win,” Jacie Hoyt said. “Then to see her come home and be a mom and have that loving, gentle, caring side, it told me you can do both.”
Jacie Hoyt remembers spending her after school hours as a kid watching mom’s teams practice.
“Literally, that’s what I did every day after school,” Hoyt said. “I grew up in a gym.”
In a coaching household, the idea was raise their daughters to believe ambition had no limits.
“I think it’s our duty to raise strong women,” Shelly Hoyt said. “I always told them you get an education and make a career for yourself. It’s a competitive world and I want you to survive in it. You have to work hard and fight for everything.”
Specifically, Hoyt wanted to be Jackie Stiles, the former Claflin, Kan., star who became her sports’ career scoring leader when she left Missouri State.
“I would wear a mouth guard to school because she wore a mouth guard,” Hoyt said. “When I was in the fifth and sixth grade I would make 1,000 shots a day because that’s what she did. To say I was a fan is an understatement.”
Hoyt, who now counts Stiles — an assistant coach at Missouri State — as a friend, has a tall task at UMKC. The Kangaroos are coming off a 10-19 season and seek their first winning record since 2012. The athletic department is facing budget reduction of about 12 percent as part of state cuts to core funding of colleges and universities.
To UMKC athletic director Carla Wilson, Hoyt is the right person for the challenge.
“Her demeanor and character is going to allow her to be successful,” Wilson said. “And her competitiveness.”